As we age, our bodies get more vulnerable to illnesses. It is essential to keep track of our physical fitness to stay active and healthy. This is what keeps us on our feet and lets us do the things we enjoy. One way doctors can assess whether we are healthy is through testing. An example is a cardiopulmonary stress test.
What Is a Cardiopulmonary Stress Test?
Also known as the cardiopulmonary exercise test (CPET), this is a non-invasive test used to assess the condition of the heart and the lungs while at rest as well as during physical activity or exercise. It provides a more thorough assessment of different systems of the body.
CPET has been used in a spectrum of clinical applications for the assessment of undiagnosed exercise intolerance and the functional capacity of body parts and organs. It is an effective way to highlight injuries, diseases, and conditions.
What Happens During a Cardiopulmonary Stress Test?
During the test, you will be asked to wear a nose clip and breathe into a nonrebreathing valve, which separates the room air from the air you expire. Then, you will be asked to do mild exercise on an upright bicycle or treadmill while breathing through the mouthpiece. Each breath is measured to assess how the body is responding. The functional capacity of your lungs is measured before and during the exercise.
Generally, a CPET lasts for 40 minutes, but you will only be required to exercise for about 10 minutes. The test will require you to exert a maximum effort to obtain reliable diagnostic information.
Benefits of a Cardiopulmonary Stress Test
Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Diseases Assessment
It can primarily measure oxygen input and carbon dioxide output. It can also look at your minute ventilation and anaerobic threshold. Carbon dioxide, which is released during a maximal exercise, is the best index of anaerobic capacity.
Weight Management Aid
CPET can measure your exercise capacity. It provides an assessment for exercise responses of the different systems of the body, which cannot be easily detected by other tests.
Each person has a different exercise capacity. However, being overweight has a significant and negative affect on your ability to exercise as well as the health of your organs. If you are significantly overweight, your organs must work extra hard. This test can highlight such issues.
Monitor Disease Progression and Response to Interventions
This test can monitor your disease progression and interventions. As such, interventions may lead to improved changes in the oxygen input, thus strengthening your exercise capacity. Repeat tests over time can highlight improvements and whether treatment needs to be changed for better results.
Cardiopulmonary Stress Test at North Texas
At Lung & Sleep Specialists of North Texas, we are dedicated to providing quality healthcare for our patients. We offer a multi-faceted approach to pulmonary care for different lung conditions and disorders. Likewise, we also have diagnostic tests like the cardiopulmonary stress test, so we can adequately diagnose your condition.
For more information, call us at (817) 594-9993 or request an appointment online. We look forward to helping you get healthier!