About the Test
A Dobutamine Stress echocardiogram combines an ultrasound study of the heart with an exercise test. The image is displayed on a television with an echo before, and after an exercise stress test. For people who are unable to exercise adequately, this stress test is done with the injection of dobutamine, a drug that produces an effect on the heart similar to exercise. The stress dobutamine echocardiogram allows the doctor to learn which areas of the heart muscle do not receive an adequate blood supply.
The Dobutamine Echocardiogram Helps to Evaluate:
- Blockages in the coronary arteries (the vessels that supply blood to the heart)
- The response of the heart muscle to exercise
At Danbury Hospital, the echocardiographic information is obtained by trained ultrasound personnel and interpreted by trained specially trained doctors.
Dobutamine is infused slowly into the vein, and the dose is increased every few minutes. Additional sets of echo images are obtained during the infusion of dobutamine and afterwards.
As dobutamine is given, it is normal to feel your heart pound for a few minutes. In addition, you may experience chest pressure, headache, dizziness, nausea and shortness of breath. Let the doctor know how you feel. These symptoms are relieved quickly when the infusion is stopped. You may be given a second drug to slow your heartbeat to a normal level.
Your heart and blood pressure are monitored during and after the infusion. The test usually ends after sufficient information is obtained. It may also be stopped when your heart beats fast enough, when the ECG shows abnormal changes, or when you experience significant symptoms.
For More Information
If you have questions about Cardiology at Danbury Hospital, visit our patient and visitor information section, or ask your doctor about Danbury Hospital.
If you need a doctor referral call us at 1-800-511-7821, or search our Find a Doctor online tool to find a doctor near you.