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Target Heart Rate for Stress Test

Monday, April 04, 2011

I've been thinking about THR recently. My regular doc found "something funny looking" on an ECG and ordered a echo cardiogram and a visit to the cardiologist for a stress test. The echo came out, and I quote, "essentially normal." That was from a voice mail on my phone, I'll need to find out more about why it was not just normal. Anyway, the cardiologist does another ECG and says I may have had a silent heart attack, but he did not think that I did, so he ordered a thallium stress test. He told me that ECG is not the best way to access heart function these days. For those who do not know this is a relatively long procedure starting with an injection of radioactive thallium, waiting for it to circulate then a 15 minute stint under an x-ray type machine that takes pictures of your heart. The same imaging is done after the stress test to see if there is a difference in perfusion to the heart. Then the stress part. I was hooked up with a blood pressure cuff & leads to measure my BP & ECG respectively during the test. The tech told me I would have to reach heart rate of 135 which was calculated to be my 85% That was very close to what I calculated with the formula I have been using when I do THR treadmill cardio exercise program.

Males:   210 minus 1/2 your age minus 5% of your body weight + 4 
Females:  210 minus - 1/2 your age minus 1% of your body weight  + 0 

Watching the monitor, it was fascinating seeing seeing how my heart was responding to the stress and pumping more blood. It was very difficult once it got to 135 and I still had to go another minute before the tech stopped treadmill.

Well I was doing great during the test but was very glad when it stopped. The cardiologist is present during this part watching the monitor; I guess to see if he needs to admit you right away or to intervene if you keel over. My BP at the right after I got off the treadmill was 188/90. It made me realize why it was important to have a normal resting blood pressure if it can get that high from exertion. The doc looked at the monitor a few minutes and said "heart looks good" I'm going to see him later this week to see how imaging came out and to ask him about the essentially normal echo. I also plan to ask him what would be a good THR for me to exercise at for weight loss.

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    Sounds like it was pretty good, but your doctor will know best.
    2633 days ago
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