These tests all use ultrasound to build up a picture of the heart structure and function. Standard echocardiography is undertaken by pacing a small probe on the front of your chest and moving this to various locations to build up a 3D image of the heart.
A more invasive technique involves utilising a small ultrasound probe on the end of an endoscope. This is passed through the mouth into the gullet allowing detailed imaging of the heart. This is carried out as a day case procedure under local anaesthetic.
A stress echocardiogram combines a standard ultrasound with either exercise or the administration of medications to increase your heart rate. This is another way to assess the blood supply to your heart and valve function. It is undertaken by your cardiac consultant.