Tilt Table Test

What is a Tilt Table Test?

The tilt table test is a form of clinical examination done to determine the cause of a patient’s dizziness and light-headedness. During the test, your heart rate and blood pressure are constantly measured to check how they change with gravity.

After this test, your doctor would be able to determine if your light-headedness is a result of a slow heart rate or a low blood pressure.

How is a Tilt Table Test Done?

You would be asked by your doctor not to eat or drink for 2 hours before the test. If you are to have the test in the morning, you will be asked not to eat nor drink after midnight. You may also need to verify from your doctor if you should keep using some medications you might have been placed on before.

The test is conducted by a nurse or technician and it is done in two parts. The first part of the test measures how your body responds to a change in its position. You lie on a table, with your knees and waist strapped to keep you in position.

A blood pressure cuff is placed around your arm to measure your blood pressure while small patches of electrodes are attached to your chest, connected to an electrocardiogram machine to monitor your heart rhythm.

The nurse, then, tilts the table upwards by 30 degrees so that your head is above the rest of your body. The nurse keeps monitoring your blood pressure and heart beat as the table is tilted. After 5 minutes, the table is further tilted to 60 degrees with continual reading of your blood pressure and heart rate. The table is left at this level for another 45 minutes

If your blood pressure drops when the table is tilted, the table would be lowered and the test is done. However, if the blood pressure does not drop with the tilting of the table, the table is also lowered but you would require the second part of the test.

The second part involves you receiving isoproterenol, a drug that makes your heart beat faster. After the nurse administers this drug in an intravenous line, the table is once again tilted to 60 degrees. Your blood pressure would be monitored for 15 minutes, after which the test ends. Your blood pressure might drop during this period or might not.  Whichever happens, the test is ended.

If your blood pressure does not fall the whole time, your results are considered normal. If your blood pressure falls, it indicates that your faintness is resulting from a slow heart rate, called bradycardia.

If you do both parts of the test, it could take about 90 minutes, while doing the first part only might take 30 to 40 minutes.

What Risks are Associated With a Tilt Table Test?

There is a small risk of fainting when the table is tilted upwards. However, if this happens, the table is immediately brought back to a flat position and the patient recovers.

Clinics offering Tilt Table Test

How can we help you?

Your contact information will be used for the sole purpose of facilitating the process of getting medical treatment at one of our partner hospitals.

Terms & Conditions | Privacy Policy

Questions? Need help? +49 30 5490 9620
Cookies help us deliver our services. By using our services, you agree to our use of cookies.