How an ANS Test Can Help Your Patients

Have you recently been informed by that your hospital or clinic should begin administering ANS tests? Are you aware of healthcare guidelines that will require a carepath for your patients? If so, it is very likely you have many questions or reservations regarding a new procedure that you are unfamiliar with. However don’t let simple confusion or misunderstanding inhibit you from doing what is best for the health of your patients. The ANS, or Autonomic Nervous System, test is designed to best evaluate your patient’s bodily functions and plays an important role in investigating those who suffer from various diseases. There are no invasive or potentially harmful procedures involved, and often times a single exam lasts less than a half hour and can be performed by an MA. The comprehensive report is also interpreted.

The test involves four separate procedures, each of which is designed to determine a particular aspect of your patient’s ANS. The four portions are:

  • Resting Phase:
    Heart Rate Variability combined with beat-to-beat blood pressure is measured to obtain a baseline of how the autonomic system is functioning during the resting phase.
  • Heart Rate during Deep Breathing (HRDB) Test:
    Heart Rate Variability combined with beat-to-beat blood pressure is measured and monitored during Deep Breathing. Additional comparisons are made to determine the changes during  HRDB from the baseline.
  • Valsalva Test:
    Heart Rate Variability combined with beat-to-beat blood pressure is measured during Valsalva Maneuver. Additional monitoring and comparisons are obtained to determine the change from the baseline in comparison with the Valsalva maneuver.
  • Standing:
    Heart Rate Variability coupled with beat-to-beat blood pressure is monitored and measured during Standing, and changes are compared with the baseline.

The data obtained from the ANS test evaluates the Parasympathetic (rest and digest) and the Sympathetic (fight, flight response) system to make sure the entire ANS is in balance.

Obtaining objective data on the parasympathetic and sympathetic component of the ANS can pinpoint health risks such as sudden death, silent heart attacks, syncope, hypertension and other hidden diseases; likewise, beat-to-beat blood pressure under various different conditions can be used to test adrenergic functions for conditions like orthostatic hypotension (OH). OH is widely known to be a consequence of chronic diabetes frequently found amongst the elderly population. Since many OH symptoms can be difficult to trace – impaired concentration, fatigue, etc. – ANS testing can fill this void and bring these problems to light sooner.

If you are still uncertain as to whether ANS testing should be an intricate part of patient care, take the time to consider the investment versus potential reward. Many victims of diabetes and other debilitating diseases have sought out hospitals renowned for their examination of the autonomic nervous system. Your patients depend on you to provide them with the best possible health care. Recent developments in healthcare require you to provide patient education as well as the carepath for improving patient health; the ANS test helps you to do both. The amount of information that a single ANS test can provide in just 15 minutes may very well save the life of an ill, elderly or seemingly healthy person. The use of technology now offers a fast, simple and effective way to test patients for multiple illnesses and allows you to provide improved patient care and maximize the use of your professional time with each patient.

Experience ANS Testing with a FREE Demonstration from Critical Care Assessment. Call 888.236.8019.

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