What are they used for?
What to expect
There are different types of exercise tests:
- Walking tests – You may be asked to walk as far as you can in six minutes, resting whenever you need to. Your heart rate and oxygen levels will be monitored using a pulse oximeter. Alternatively, with the shuttle-walking test, you may be asked to walk between two points 10 metres apart and stop when you hear a bleep. The timing of the bleeps will get shorter and shorter, giving you less time to get to the next point. This is designed to make you walk quicker and quicker. The test ends when you can’t keep up with the beeps any more. You will be asked to repeat the test.
- Treadmill tests – You will be connected to a mouthpiece or mask, which will measure your breathing during the exercise. You will start off gently and then the amount of resistance will be gradually increased – for example by simulating walking or cycling up a slope. The test will measure how much oxygen you take in and how much carbon dioxide you breathe out. It will also monitor your blood pressure and heart using an ECG. The test normally lasts around 10 minutes however it may be stopped sooner if you are unable to continue.
- Cycle tests – these are similar to treadmill tests but you will use an exercise bike instead of a treadmill and the pedals will become harder and harder to push around.
Avoid eating a large meal or smoking immediately before your test. You will be able to go home afterwards, once you have recovered fully.
What can they diagnose?
Our team of experts don’t stop until we find the cause
Request a call back from the Ridgeway Respiratory Services team to discuss your personalised diagnostic tests.