Pharmacologic stress echocardiogram

A pharmacologic stress echocardiogram is an important noninvasive method that involves the injection of a medication to stimulate the heart in a similar way as exercise.

The pharmacologic stress echocardiogram helps to define some symptoms accused by patient during exercise, to evaluate heart wall motility and valve defects during rest and exercise periods.

Contraindications for this test are:

  • acute myocardial infarction within 48 hours
  • aortic aneurysm
  • unstable angina
  • decompensated heart failure
  • pulmonary embolism in acute phase
  • myocarditis and/or pericarditis in acute phase
  • endocarditis
  • deep venous thrombosis

Although the pharmacologic stress echocardiogram is a safe procedure, the risk of complications calls for careful consideration of indications and contraindications.

For this exam the preparation required is very simple:

  • do not eat or drink caffeine products, energy drink and tea for 24 hours before exam
  • do not eat or drink for four hours before your appointment. Drinking water is OK.
  • do not smoke
  • wear comfortable clothes
  • please bring all your medications or a list of them with doses to your appointment
  • please speak to your physician prior to this exam to receive special instructions you may need regarding your medications

The execution of this test involves electrocardiographic monitoring, blood pressure monitoring and intravenous administration of the drug chosen as stress.

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