Review Articles

Noninvasive Evaluation of Symptomatic Women with Suspected Coronary Artery Disease



Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death in the United States, yet several factors make it challenging to diagnose in women. Although women have more frequent chest pain than men, atypical symptoms such as nausea, dyspnea, and fatigue make it difficult to determine their risk of coronary artery disease (CAD) before testing. Current guidelines recommend exercise electrocardiography (ex-ECG) as the initial test in symptomatic women with intermediate pretest probability who can exercise and have a normal resting ECG; however, treadmill ex-ECG testing has a significantly lower positive predictive value in women. In addition, women often have nonobstructive CAD in conjunction with microvascular dysfunction and other cardiovascular abnormalities that can decrease the accuracy of all noninvasive tests. The following provides an overview of exercise ECG, echocardiography, SPECT imaging, and various other available modalities and examines their effectiveness in diagnosing and managing symptomatic women with suspected CAD.


coronary artery diseasewomenischemic heart diseasestress testexercise ECG
  • Year: 2017
  • Volume: 13 Issue: 4
  • Page/Article: 193-200
  • DOI: 10.14797/mdcj-13-4-193
  • Published on 1 Oct 2017
  • Peer Reviewed