Head-up Tilt Test (HTT) - Heartbt | Heart Disease | Heart Surgery | Chest Pains | Bypass

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Head-up Tilt Test (HTT)

Non-Invasive Tests

Head Up Tilt Test

The Head-up Tilt Test is done to:

  • Determine the cause of fainting spells.

  • Evaluate heart rhythm, blood pressure, symptoms and sometimes other measurements with change of position of a patient from lying at an angle to a different angle to being straight up.

In preparation for such a test:  

  • Do not eat or drink anything, except water for four hours before your test. If you must take medications, drink small sips of water to help you swallow your pills.

  • Take all your medications as prescribed. If you are diabetic, check with your doctor about how to adjust your diabetic medications.

  • Wear comfortable clothes. You may wear a hospital gown during the procedure, if you prefer. It is best not to wear any jewellry or valuables.

  • Most likely, you will be able to go home after the test. You should bring someone with you to drive you home after the test.

The test usually takes one to two hours to complete, however, that may vary depending on the changes observed in your blood pressure and heart rate and the symptoms you experience during the test.
Before the test begins, a nurse will help you get ready. The nurse will start an IV (intravenous) line. This is so the doctors and nurses may give you medications and fluids during the procedure if necessary.

You will be awake during the test. You will be asked to lie quietly and keep your legs still,  

The nurse will connect you to 3 monitors, including a:
Electrocardiogram or ECG: Attached to several sticky electrode patches placed onto your chest.
Oximeter monitor: Attached to a small clip on your finger. Checks the oxygen level of your blood.
Blood pressure monitor: Connected to a blood pressure cuff on your arm. Checks your blood pressure intermittently throughout the study.

You may feel nothing at all or the symptoms you feel when you're about to pass out. In some cases you may pass out (faint). It is important to tell your doctor or nurse any symptoms you feel. As part of the test, your doctor may give you certain medication. These medications may make you feel different or strange and you may feel your heart beat faster or stronger. This feeling will go away as the medication wears off.

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