What is the efficacy of pharmacologic stress testing for cardiac assessment?

Updated: Nov 20, 2018
  • Author: Richard S Krause, MD; Chief Editor: Barry E Brenner, MD, PhD, FACEP  more...
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Answer

Answer

Pharmacologic stress testing with nuclear imaging is equivalent to an exercise stress test with nuclear imaging at detecting coronary artery disease. Note, however, that because patients undergoing pharmacologic stress testing tend to have more comorbidities, the posttest probability of disease is higher in patients who have undergone a pharmacologic test. A normal pharmacologic stress test result confers a 1-2% per year cardiac event rate, whereas a normal exercise test result with nuclear imaging has a rate of less than 1% per year. [22]


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