Exercise Stress Test (Treadmill Test)

What is it?

An Exercise Stress Test measures and records your heart's electrical activity whilst under the strain of exercise; walking on a treadmill. The treadmill will increase in speed and slope at specific intervals and your heart rate, blood pressure and electrocardiogram (ECG) will be continually monitored. A cardiologist and a cardiac technician will be present at all times. This test takes approximately 30 minutes.


There is no specific preparation required.

Men should wear comfortable loose clothes such as tracksuit pants or shorts and comfortable walking shoes such as runners. Chest hair may need to be shaved to allow the electrodes to adhere to the skin. The technician will do this at the time of the test.

Ladies should wear skirts or pants to allow access to the chest area for electrode placement. A loose fitting gown will be provided. Comfortable walking shoes are also recommended.

What to bring on the day

  • A current referral from your GP or specialist
  • Medicare card
  • Any concession or health insurance cards


This test is usually performed on patients with know or suspected coronary artery disease, therefore there is a minimal risk of complication. A major potential complication is suffering a heart attack during exercise testing. The risk of this occurring is rare and death has very rarely been reported (1 in 10,000). The room is equipped with experienced staff and emergency equipment should an emergency situation arise.


The cardiologist will verbally provide you with the results at the end of the test and a report will be forwarded to your referring doctor within 24-48 hours. If the cardiologist dictates a letter, this will be sent at a later time.

Full payment will be required on the day of the test.

If you are a patient undergoing this test and you have any further queries, please phone (08) 8297 6888 or raise them with your cardiologist.

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