The purpose of this test is to determine the blood flow to the heart muscle when the heart is under stress (exercise) and at rest. Before exercise, a small intravenous (IV) line will be started in a vein in your arm. The IV will allow us to inject the Cardiolite marker into the bloodstream at the appropriate time.
Following are some frequently asked questions about the test and how to prepare for it. Click on the question for the answer, which will appear below the questions.
During the test, the cardiologist and a technician are present. Electrodes will be placed on the chest the same as for an electrocardiogram (ECG). Your blood pressure, heart rate, and ECG will be recorded.
You will be asked to perform a “graded” exercise test on a motor-driven treadmill. The first stage of the test will begin with the treadmill at a slow speed and a little uphill inclination. Every three minutes the treadmill increases in speed and elevation. The physician or technician may stop the test at any time for medical reasons or you may stop the test because of significant fatigue or discomfort. In general, however, we encourage you to exercise as long as possible in order to maximally stress the blood flow to your heart.
Cardiolite will be injected into your bloodstream through the IV. You will walk for 2 additional minutes after the injection. Cardiolite is taken up by the heart muscle in proportion to the blood flow to it through the coronary arteries. After exercise, we will use a special camera to take x-ray like pictures of the blood flow to your heart.
On a separate day, the rest portion of the exam will be performed. Cardiolite will be injected directly into a superficial vein while you are resting. After the injection you will need to eat a fatty meal. The fatty meal helps clear out activity in the stomach and colon.
Approximately one hour later, we will take a set of pictures of the resting blood flow to your heart. After you leave the laboratory we will perform special computer processing of the pictures in order to compare the blood flow patterns at stress and rest.
The test will be performed at:
Legacy Heart Center 6601 Preston Road Plano, Texas 75024469-800-6300
It is very important that you keep your appointment once it is scheduled. If you must cancel your appointment, please give the office at least 24 hours notice by calling 469-800-6300. Our testing schedule requires tight time restrictions, so please notify the office immediately if you will be late for your appointment. We appreciate your complete cooperation.
Cardiolite can increase the accuracy of traditional stress testing in detection of coronary artery disease.
After a review of the test, your medical history, other imaging modalities and previous tests by a Legacy Heart Center cardiologist, a report will be sent to the ordering physician. The ordering physician will then review the results and discuss them with you.