Dobutamine Stress Echocardiogram

A Dobutamine Stress Echocardiogram combines an ultrasound (sound wave) study of the heart with a stress test. The test will help your doctor determine if there are areas of your heart which do not receive enough blood supply due to coronary artery disease. Prior to the test an IV will be started. First, you will have ultrasound pictures taken of your heart at rest. Then, a medication (Dobutamine) will be given slowly through the IV to stimulate the heart.

During the infusion, you will be continuously monitored for blood pressure, heart rate and ECG changes. While your heart is beating rapidly, another ultrasound will be done to assess your heart's response to stress.

You should allow 1 1/2 hours for the entire test which includes preparation, the stress portion, and the recovery period. The test takes approximately 1 1/2 hours.

Patient Instructions:

1. Do not eat or drink anything four hours prior to the test.

2. Diabetics should eat a light breakfast and take their insulin.

3. Take all your regular medications, unless otherwise instructed by your physician.

4. Wear two-piece clothing and comfortable shoes.

5. If you have a history of glaucoma, please notify the person doing your test.

6. Your physician will be notified of the results.

If you have additional questions about the procedure or instructions, contact your cardiologist.