Pediatric Exercise Stress Test

A pediatric exercise stress test, combined with an electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG), provides information about how well your child’s heart functions.

The exercise stress test takes measurements of your child’s heart activity while he or she is active — as kids often are. Other heart tests may take measurements while your child is resting.

Your child will walk on a treadmill or ride a stationary bike. Under the guidance of a trained health care provider, the exercise stress test will gradually become more difficult. On a treadmill, the speed and elevation will increase gradually. On a stationary bike, the pedaling resistance — how hard your child must work to move the pedals — will increase gradually.

For the EKG, 10 self-adhesive electrodes will be placed on your child’s body in precise areas to capture heart activity during the test. Your child also will wear a cuff on the arm to measure blood pressure readings. To capture breathing and oxygen readings, your child may wear a mouthpiece and a nose clip during the test.

Following the test, our pediatric cardiologists will gather and analyze the data from the exercise stress test. They will then meet with you to discuss the results and any recommendations for treatment, if necessary.

Norton Children’s Heart Institute, affiliated with the University of Louisville, is the leading provider of pediatric heart care in Louisville and Southern Indiana.

The Society of Thoracic Surgeons has ranked Norton Children’s Heart Institute’s pediatric heart care among the best in the region. Norton Children’s has a network of outreach diagnostic and treatment services conveniently located throughout Kentucky and Southern Indiana.

Why choose Norton Children’s Heart Institute

No other congenital heart surgery program in Kentucky, Ohio or Southern Indiana is ranked higher by the Society of Thoracic Surgeons than the Norton Children’s Pediatric Cardiothoracic Surgery Program.

  • Norton Children’s Hospital has been a pioneer in pediatric cardiothoracic surgery, performing Kentucky’s first pediatric heart transplant in 1986 and becoming the second site in the United States to perform an infant heart transplant.
  • Our board-certified and fellowship-trained pediatric cardiovascular surgeons are leaders in the field as clinicians and researchers.
  • More than 5,000 children a year visit Norton Children’s Heart Institute, affiliated with the University of Louisville, for advanced heart care.
  • Norton Children’s Heart Institute successfully performs more than 17,500 procedures a year.
  • The Society of Thoracic Surgeons ranked Norton Children’s Heart Institute among the best in the region after studying years of our patients’ outcomes and our ability to handle a range of pediatric heart conditions, including the most severe.
  • Norton Children’s Heart Institute has satellite outpatient centers in Bowling Green, Frankfort, Owensboro and Paducah; 28 tele-echocardiography locations in Kentucky and Southern Indiana; and six fetal echocardiography locations across Kentucky.
  • The American Board of Thoracic Surgery has certified the cardiothoracic surgeons at Norton Children’s Hospital with subspecialty certification in congenital heart surgery.
  • The Jennifer Lawrence Cardiac Intensive Care Unit is under construction to give our patients the most advanced cardiac intensive care unit available.
  • Our multidisciplinary approach to pediatric heart surgery brings together our specialists in cardiothoracic surgery, cardiology, anesthesiology, cardiac critical care and other areas to create a complete care plan tailored for your child.
Heart – 2929

Norton Children’s Heart Institute

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(502) 629-2929

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