What is Heart Test? What are the Types of Heart Tests?

Heart test is a type of test or examination that helps to evaluate the type of heart disorder one is suffering from, such as- heart blockage, severe chest pain, diseases, etc. Some of the types of heart tests include Electrocardiogram (ECG), Cardiac Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), Cholesterol test, stress test, etc.

Which type of heart test to be done should be advised by the doctors and primarily depends upon the health condition of the patient? Besides blood test and chest x-ray, mentioned below are some of the other tests that one can opt easily:

Cholesterol test

A cholesterol test is also known as lipid profile or lipid panel and measures fats or lipids in the blood. The measurements indicate the risk of having a heart attack or other heart disease. The test involves

  • Total Cholesterol: It is a sum of the blood’s cholesterol content. A high level can put one at an increased risk of heart disease. The normal range of total cholesterol should be below 200 milligrams per decilitre (mg/dl).
  • Low density Lipoprotein (LDL) Cholesterol- It is also known as ‘bad’ cholesterol. Too much of its content in the blood causes accumulation of fatty deposits in the arteries and reduces the flow of blood. This deposition causes rupture and leads to major heart and vascular problems. The normal value of LDL level should be less than 130 mg/dL.
  • High-Density Lipoprotein (HDL) Cholesterol –It is sometimes called ‘good’ cholesterol because it helps in carrying away the LDL (bad) cholesterol from the body.

Electrocardiogram (ECG)

Heart test like ECG records the electrical signals and help the doctor to detect irregularities such as blockage, chest pain heart diseases etc., or problems in heart’s rhythm and structure. One can also perform an ECG while doing exercises like stress electrocardiogram.

Echocardiogram

It is a non-invasive exam which includes an ultrasound of your chest and exhibits detailed images of the patient’s heart structure and function.

Cardiac Computerized Tomography (CT) Scan

This test aids in checking heart problems like chest pain, blockage etc. An X- ray tube placed inside the machine rotates around the body and collects images of the heart and chest.

Cardiac Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

In this test, one has to lie on a table placed inside a long –tube like machine which produces a magnetic field. This magnetic field produces images to help the doctor evaluate the health of the heart.

Holter Monitoring

It is a portable device that one needs to wear in order to record an ECG that continues for 24 to 72 hours. It helps in detecting the rhythm irregularities that doctors usually unable to evaluate during a regular ECG examination.

Stress Test

This test is done to determine if one is suffering from heart disease or not. The different types of stress test are exercise stress test, exercise electrocardiogram, treadmill test, graded exercise and stress EKG.

Author Bio: The author is an avid health blogger who writes about health related issues especially heart and brain as well as suggests the required tests and treatments for the diseases.

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