The Children’s Heart Center at Goryeb Children’s Hospital at Morristown Medical Center offers stress tests, which allow physicians to observe how the patient's heart works during exercise on a treadmill or bicycle.
Why do a stress test?
Stress tests help physicians observe:
- How heart rate and blood pressure are affected by the added stress of physical activity
- Heart rhythms while exercising
- The electrocardiogram (EKG), or recording of electrical impulses within the heart, for changes during exercise
- Significant symptoms that may occur during physical activity
Learn how to prepare your child for a stress test >
How is the test performed?
A technologist will place several electrodes, similar to sticky patches, on your child's chest to monitor heart rhythm. A cuff will also be placed around his or her arm to allow blood pressures to be taken frequently throughout the test.
Your child will then begin to walk on an exercise treadmill with the speed and incline gradually increased. At the end of the session, the treadmill will slowly decrease in speed and incline until it comes to a complete stop. The exercise takes 10 to 15 minutes and the complete test takes one hour.
A doctor will be present during the entire examination. If at any time, symptoms, such as chest pain, dizziness or fatigue, occur, he or she should be informed.
How will I receive the test results?
The pediatric cardiologist present during the stress test will discuss the results with you and your child at the end of the session.