Treadmill testing 'reliable indicator of heart risk in older women'

11 December 2012

Treadmill testing can reliably predict the risk of coronary artery disease in women over the age of 65, it has been found.

Research published in the American Journal of Cardiology also found that two specific electrocardiogram (EKG) indicators of heart stress during an exercise treadmill test (ETT) could make its predictions more accurate.

The authors of the study, published in The American Journal of Cardiology, said their results could help make the ETT a more useful clinical test.

In the study, 111 women who had visited their doctors due to chest pain and whose ETT results were positive, indicating they needed further cardiovascular testing, took part in the study.

While just half of the women with positive treadmill tests had coronary artery disease, when the age was pushed up, the predictive value of the ETT rose.

The test successfully predicted arterial disease in just 36 per cent of women in the youngest group (aged 35 to 50 years), but in the 65 and over group identified the condition in 68 per cent.

Posted by Edward Bartel

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