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Exercise tolerance testing (ETT)

Easy Read Information

Exercise Tolerance Testing (ETT) is where we ask you to do some exercise and watch to see your heart behaves.

On this page you can download more information about these tests.

What we do

Cardiac abnormalities may only become apparent when the heart is forced to function under stress (exercise). During exercise, if the heart muscle becomes starved of oxygen (ischaemia) then the cardiac celss will fail to function correctly and may cause changes to the heart rhythm and blood pressure. If this occurs, serious arrhythmias can be prevoked and will compromise the health of the patient.

Patients are asked to walk on a treadmill (never run) with the test starting at a sedentary pace and building up in speed and incline every 3 minutes. During this time the patient is monitored via ECG and blood pressure until they come to the end of their exercise capacity, when the treadmill is stopped and the patient asked to rest on our recovery bed until their heart rate and blood pressure returns to normal.


Being referred to us

Patients who experience symptoms of palpitations or chest pain during stress/exertion, or to assess a patient's exercise tolerance. The DVLA will occasionally require some patients to perform an ETT as part of a medical examination to be able to drive professionally.