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Question:

Given my husband's history, how often should he have a stress test? 

About 4 years ago, my husband had a heart attack while exercising at gym from 99% blockage of widowmaker artery. Stent was put in place; no heart muscle damage occurred. A year later, another attack occurred (again while working out at gym) due to plaque buildup around stent. Had an additional stent and changed from Plavix to Effient, alleviating that situation and still no damage to heart muscle. In light of that history in otherwise healthy 60-year-old male who regularly exercises strenuously (including full court basketball), how often would you recommend having a stress test done? 

submitted by Peggy from Lake Charles, Louisiana on 5/20/2013

Answer:

by Texas Heart Institute cardiologist, George Younis, MD    

George Younis, MDWe do not currently suggest routine stress testing of asymptomatic patients except in very rare circumstances. It is natural to just want to get one "just to know", but a heart attack is a spontaneous event and you can have one the day after a 100% normal stress test. That is to say in the absence of symptoms, I would not suggest any particular routine or schedule for having a stress test.    

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Updated May 2013
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