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Old 02-23-2012, 05:44 PM
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Default If you ever have to take a cardiac stress test

Having a few problems so cardiologist set up stress test that I took today. The last one of these I took, you had to get wired up, get on treadmill and get the heart pumping to the rate they want or have a heart attack, whichever comes first.

The one I took today is called a PET/CT cardiac stress test. It took all of 15 minutes from beginning to end. You are first injected with a tracer, run through a CT scanner lying flat on your back. You are then injected with a drug that actually dilates your blood vessels and you are scanned again.Dilation lasts about 6 minutes.

I highly recommend this test. I felt absolutely nothing, heart rate only went up about 10 beats per minute and your blood pressure actually goes down.

Not only is it easy to take but is compared to 98% accuracy vs 75% accuracy in treadmill test. Trinity hospital is the only one in my area that offers it so not sure if it is available everywhere.

Just thought I would let ya'll know.
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Old 02-23-2012, 06:34 PM
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Like you I had one of those new stress test done late last year. This is my first time to have the new test and I like it better. Don
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Old 02-23-2012, 06:57 PM
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I have to have a nuclear stress test every year. First thing they do is start an IV, then on to the treadmill - and while you're doing that, they inject some radioactive stuff in the IV tube. Then it's to the CAT scan machine for thirty minutes. After two hours, it's back to the cat scan for another thirty minutes. A whole day ruined, but it helps the Doctor pay for his Lexus.
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Old 02-23-2012, 07:03 PM
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Yep. My cardiologist requires it once per year, in conjunction with a treadmill stress test.

Heart attack and 6 stents three years ago. Stress test 6 months later and then once per year following. The last test I took actually showed "better numbers" than the previous.

Stress test 2010: $4800
Stress test 2011: $5600

We're grateful for medical insurance!
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Old 02-23-2012, 07:07 PM
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And if your over 50 consider a colonoscopy, especially if you have a family history of colon cancer. My wife lost her father and sister to this disease because neither of them had it done (against medical advice). I also lost a HS friend the same way. The prep is uncomfortable, the colonoscopy less so, the disease fatal if left unchecked.
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Old 02-23-2012, 07:16 PM
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I have to have a nuclear stress test every year. First thing they do is start an IV, then on to the treadmill - and while you're doing that, they inject some radioactive stuff in the IV tube. Then it's to the CAT scan machine for thirty minutes. After two hours, it's back to the cat scan for another thirty minutes. A whole day ruined, but it helps the Doctor pay for his Lexus.
Hmmmm Whole day ruined.. or whole life ruined by missing a clogged artery ???

Just sayin'...
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Old 02-23-2012, 07:26 PM
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I had one of the old fashioned test where they run you on the treadmill until you're ready to fall over. The new test sounds friendlier.

Now, they need a friendlier version of the colonoscopy. I'm due for one of those........... Perhaps they could feed you a special diet and measure your farts?
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Old 02-23-2012, 08:12 PM
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I had one of the old fashioned test where they run you on the treadmill until you're ready to fall over. The new test sounds friendlier.

Now, they need a friendlier version of the colonoscopy. I'm due for one of those........... Perhaps they could feed you a special diet and measure your farts?
If you measure that-you'd just as soon remove my whole colon
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Old 02-23-2012, 08:35 PM
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I did the nuclear/treadmill test before I had my cardioversion last year. My heartrate was already high before the test because I had to be off my meds for 24 hours prior. So after straining to make it 5 minutes on the treadmill, my heartrate hit 205 bpm. It felt like my heart was going to explode out of my chest. No, it wasn't a fun experience, yes, it took awhile, although not as long as it would have taken had my heartrate been normal to begin with, but like Sal mentioned, it's better than having a heart attack. And if I am going to have a heart attack, what better place to have it than in the hospital on a treadmill?
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Old 02-23-2012, 08:36 PM
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I had to have a stent put in my aorta for an aneurysm behind my stomach in 2007 and they gave me a chemical stess test to see if my bypasses were still clear, they were but the test was awful, it felt like what I think a heart attack would feel like. Jeff

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Old 02-23-2012, 08:44 PM
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Ya know, back in November of 2009 my doctor insisted I take the stress test. I didn't even like the way it sounded. But I finally agreed. So I go in early, hoping to get out and do a full day's work. The girl running the test (and trying to kill me) started a bit slow, but within seconds she had the treadmill straight up and down. And she had it spinning so fast I'd need a dragster to keep up. But then she took mercy on me and shut it down. Had me get off it and go sit down on the gurney. Soon she had a cardiologist looking at the graph paper it'd been spitting out. Then she came over to me and said "here, take this pill and put it under your tongue". She said it won't do anything but relax you maybe, so lay back. And I went to sleep. Then they woke me up and said I needed an angiogram. So I called work and said I won't be in on time... Soon they were calling my wife (next of kin?) So they put me in a room (holding cell?)

Then it was off to the evil folks that do the angiogram. I got to the cold room. It wasn't a walk in freezer, but might as well have been. So they gave me a warm blanket. Soon they said they were going to give me something in an IV that would relax me, but I could watch the screen if I wanted. So I went to sleep. Next thing I knew, I was back in the room with my wife there. And I was the grand prize winner! I was going to get surgery the next afternoon! Wonderful. But they gave me even more happy medicine and I went to sleep.

So the next day came and they cut my heart out. Much to the dismay of those who were sure I didn't have one. And just for fun, they even slit my leg open and harvested some vein.

So I again learned to never trust anyone, or anything they said. But on the plus side, they had lots of happy pills and were pretty darn free with them. The one nurse even had a cute backside. But before you know it, I was sent home to suffer. And my only source of relief was my wife, notably stingy with anything that might make me feel bad. The happy pills said one or two every four to six hours. To her, that means one every six hours. The nice little nursey was giving me two every four hours. About the second cycle of that and I took over my own pain meds.

Youngest son heard the commotion. He's probably nearly addicted to pills because of his ongoing back issues. But for once he was willing to share. My wife had to go back to the surgeons office because they can't call in the good stuff. Son just called his doctor and they sent him another prescription. So I had a backup plan if need be. But I didn't need it. I managed to ween myself of the happy pills even faster than I thought possible. I went from 2 every 4 hours to 1/2 every 6, and then none at all for a couple of days. Then only a half and then none.

So my plan is when they demand another treadmill, I'm refusing. If I die, its alright by me. I just don't like the pain. They deal in other peoples pain all the time and it means nothing to them. If I croak, its OK. Oldest son's instructions are clear. Just dispose of the body. Or roast it to ash and dump them out in the desert. He knows the place. And he has better sense than to include women folk in the process. I hope. They'd want BLM permission! What nonsense. The winds will carry the ash away.
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Old 02-23-2012, 08:45 PM
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I had to have a stent put in my aorta for an aneurysm behind my stomach in 2007 and they gave me a chemical stess test to see if my bypasses were still clear, they were but the test was awful, it felt like what I think a heart attack would feel like. Jeff
I had one with the same effects. The last one I did the treadmill and don't intend to do the chemical again, except in a emergency. It doesn't affect everyone so drastically.
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Old 02-23-2012, 09:05 PM
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I've been thru the tests too and found to have 70% blockage which was fixed with stents.
Now I feel like a new man, retired, lost weight, dropped my blood pressure, eat right, sleep right, walk several miles a day (too old to run anymore) and enjoy each day like it is my last.
Thank God for modern medicine and I thank God for each day, which is a gift.
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Old 02-23-2012, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by gunlovingirl View Post
I did the nuclear/treadmill test before I had my cardioversion last year. My heartrate was already high before the test because I had to be off my meds for 24 hours prior. So after straining to make it 5 minutes on the treadmill, my heartrate hit 205 bpm. It felt like my heart was going to explode out of my chest. No, it wasn't a fun experience, yes, it took awhile, although not as long as it would have taken had my heartrate been normal to begin with, but like Sal mentioned, it's better than having a heart attack. And if I am going to have a heart attack, what better place to have it than in the hospital on a treadmill?
Thump.. Thump.. Thumpitty THUMP.. What a great feeling!!. MUCH beter than_________________________________________________________THUD!
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Old 02-23-2012, 09:58 PM
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I was spared all those physically onerous tests --- they just wired me up, and showed my internet browsing history to my mother...
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Old 02-23-2012, 10:12 PM
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Beware of chemical stress tests! My wife had one and it said that she had three vessel coronary disease. About $20,000.00 later after a cardiac catherization, she was found to have no obstructions. There is no substitute for a treadmill stress test. I had one and passed!

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Old 02-23-2012, 11:57 PM
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I went thru the stress tests last week. Did walking on the tread mill. Injected with the what ever the hell they use. Walked till I like to have keeled over, Then in to the Cat Scan or whatever the tunnel is called. Flunked that right away. Had to get some meds to calm me down 'cause I have Clostrophobia real bad. So slept thru the whole ordeal. Called the doc yesterday & everything OK for my age. Good news to me as I'll turn 81 this June.
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Old 02-24-2012, 12:15 AM
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Was told I should probably get one a few years ago.Snowed a couple feet that night,so I spent the next two days skiing in deep powder at 12000 ft.Felt great, think I passed.
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Old 02-24-2012, 11:28 AM
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My Dad died at age 55 of a massive heart attack in 1984.Around late 1997 I started to notice some chest pain on occasion.At that time I was 43,about the same age he started having trouble.Well I lived with it til spring of 99 without telling my wife,although she sensed something wasn't right.Wasn't bad pain but then again there is no such thing as good pain,especially chest pain.So after she found out she proceeded to persuade(you married guys know what persuade means)to go to doctor.Yep,here comes the stress test.Having two daughters and three stepdaughters and working with the public I thought every day was a form of stress test and I passed all that on a daily basis.Day of the real deal came and the nurse administering the test was a short stout Kathy Bates of a woman with a real sour disposition.You smoke? She asked.Yep I said.With half smile and half sneer she said"You won't finish this test"Well she did her best with the speed and incline controls to make me fail,but I'm kinda stubborn and I finished the test and lived through it.I told her I should have bet her and taken her money.She wasn't amused.From there it was on to a heart cath "Just to make sure"I was told.Everything was fine. Coming up on 58 in a few months,still have occasional pain but figure every day is a gift and try to make the most of it.
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Old 02-24-2012, 11:32 AM
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I had one of the chemical ones just before I had a back surgery and couldn't walk the treadmill good enough with a numb leg. NEVER AGAIN! The statement "an elephant sitting on your chest" describes it well.
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Old 02-24-2012, 11:37 AM
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Yep. My cardiologist requires it once per year, in conjunction with a treadmill stress test.

Heart attack and 6 stents three years ago. Stress test 6 months later and then once per year following. The last test I took actually showed "better numbers" than the previous.

Stress test 2010: $4800
Stress test 2011: $5600

We're grateful for medical insurance!
If I wasn't stressed by the test, I would certainly be stressed by the bill.
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Old 02-24-2012, 11:48 AM
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Having a few problems so cardiologist set up stress test that I took today. The last one of these I took, you had to get wired up, get on treadmill and get the heart pumping to the rate they want or have a heart attack, whichever comes first.

The one I took today is called a PET/CT cardiac stress test. It took all of 15 minutes from beginning to end. You are first injected with a tracer, run through a CT scanner lying flat on your back. You are then injected with a drug that actually dilates your blood vessels and you are scanned again.Dilation lasts about 6 minutes.

I highly recommend this test. I felt absolutely nothing, heart rate only went up about 10 beats per minute and your blood pressure actually goes down.

Not only is it easy to take but is compared to 98% accuracy vs 75% accuracy in treadmill test. Trinity hospital is the only one in my area that offers it so not sure if it is available everywhere.

Just thought I would let ya'll know.
The downside of the easy test is they charged my insurance company $7,000.00, and then 4 months after the test said I was fine, I had a heart attack and needed triple bypass surgery to correct the blockages not founds by the expensive drug induced stress test.
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Old 02-24-2012, 12:15 PM
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The downside of the easy test is they charged my insurance company $7,000.00, and then 4 months after the test said I was fine, I had a heart attack and needed triple bypass surgery to correct the blockages not founds by the expensive drug induced stress test.
Did you eat nothing but bacon for that four months?

Seriously, I'm glad you guys and gals are taking care of yourselves.
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Old 02-24-2012, 02:55 PM
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The moral to the story is: See your doctor and dentist regularly. It doesn't make you less of a man, and you may live to be an onerey old fart. (Quite an honorable accomplishment.)
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Old 02-24-2012, 03:02 PM
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I did a treadmill test when I was 59. The doctor told me that I had the heart of a 20 year old. I told the doctor "That is nice but the rest of me is 59!".

Last year, at the age of 66, I did the test that used an injection. My knees will no longer let me do the treadmill. My heart is still OK but my butt is too big.
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Old 02-24-2012, 03:19 PM
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205? Good lord.

I train hard; not as much as I used to, but more than most 52 YO office dweebs. I try to get at least 4 sessions of 40+ minutes of hard cardio weekly, plus weights. An hour a day at least 5 days of cardio, plus weights, is much better. Had two stress tests for reasons that turned out not to be my ticker, passed them well.

It's the only body we get, and I plan to stay here and be a pain in the tush to people who need it as long as I can.
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Old 02-24-2012, 03:44 PM
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Did you eat nothing but bacon for that four months?
Pretty much, with some biscuits and gravy too. But I work at Bob Evans Corporate and the test kitchen is chocked full of fresh viddles, none of them are healthy, could be why they taste so darn good.
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Old 02-24-2012, 04:39 PM
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I have not been to my cardiologist in several years. After my second treadmill stress test I told him there would be no more. If he wants to see how my ticker is doing he can get me a hot young blonde and a hotel room.
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