Submitted by Dr T on December 14, 2014 – 12:46pm
Exercise stress testing is the most widely used method to test a patient for coronary artery disease (CAD). For patients unable to exercise, pharmacologic stress testing is an alternative with drugs like Persantine, Adenosine and Dobutamine. This type of stress testing is used in combination with radionuclide imaging and echocardiography:
Adenosine will dilate (stretch) your coronary arteries. In areas of blockage this cannot happen thus resulting in less local blood flow, which can than be demonstrated with images such as the ones above. If you have history of asthma/reactive airway disease, you should probably avoid adenosine stress testing bcause of the risk of prolonged bronchospasm that may be difficult to treat. Likewise patients with heart block would be better of with another form of testing.
You should definitely discuss with your doctor whether your history of lung disease is such that adenosine should be avoided. An alternative would be to use dobutamine instead, as I suspect you would not be able to use a treadmill. Another alternative would be a CTCA to determine whether you have significant coronary artery blockages.
Hope this helps,