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Mayo Clinic

Patient with chest pain despite normal stress test results should seek further evaluation

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: What could cause chest discomfort or shortness of breath during exercise or other physical activity in women who have had a "normal" stress test?

ANSWER: Chest pain or shortness of breath that happens with exertion could be symptoms of a number of medical conditions -- even when the results of a stress test appear normal.

The two most common stress tests are echocardiogram (or echo) stress tests and nuclear stress tests.

An echocardiogram uses sound waves to make up images of the heart beating and pumping blood. For an echo stress, you walk on a treadmill to increase your heart rate, or you may be given medication that increases your heart...