The best advice is to see a doctor for your shortness of breath, and a doctor can quickly evaluate your condition and decide on the appropriate tests. If the doctor believes an exercise test is not appropriate, he will decide on injection of a medium for perfusion analysis so don't be concerned about being involved in something you can not handle. You definitely want to rule out serious heart problem..
But to answer your question about a treadmill. The cheapest of cheap treadmills are manual. If you don't plan on using it very much, then go ahead and get one. Most people will probably want a motorized treadmill, though. They are easier on the joints because you don't have to strain so much when you start the belt moving, as you would on a manual treadmill. You will also get a lot more variety in your workout using the computer on a motorized home treadmill....that would include elevation of the track, different speeds, METs, heart rate, etc. You can adjust the speed to a very, very slow walk, a faster pace as you progress, etc. Your budget may not be able to include the expense, the cheap treadmills are not very accommodating, laborious, and boring. It would be better to stroll around the neighborhood. Take care.
You need to really give a bit more information before any opinions can be accurately given. Things like, what was your fitness like before the stenting, was you short of breath then? How long ago did you last exercise before the procedure? I did no real exercise for 3 years and due to shortness of breath exercise of any type has been a real problem. Doctors always want you to jump onto a treadmill and start walking, but this is not reality with high levels of discomfort and gasping for air. What I have been doing for the last few weeks is redecorating the house. This involves little walking, but hours of standing, bending, twisting and walking up and down step ladders. I was surprised at how much pain I had in my muscles each morning from working and this showed just how unfit I had become. I can now walk about half a mile with no angina whereas I was lucky to make 10 paces four weeks ago. I am installing a new kitchen next week and then will continue decorating until the summer, when I will venture into the garden to sort that out. Each day you find you can comfortably push yourself to do a bit more.
Definition: MET or the standard metabolic equivalent is a unit used to estimate the amount of oxygen used by the body during physical activity.
1 MET = the energy (oxygen) used by the body at rest, while sitting quietly or reading a book, for example. The harder your body works during the activity, the more oxygen is consumed and the higher the MET level.
•Activity that burns 3 to 6 METs is considered moderate-intensity physical activity.
•Activity that burns > 6 METs is considered vigorous-intensity physical activity.
Moderate-intensity physical activity refers to a level of effort that:
•Causes an increase in breathing and/or heart rate and a stress test would monitor heart rate to be within an acceptable range (220-age). The level of effort required by a person to do an activity, and higher-end treadmills monitor activity and display METs on a screen. A report from a stress test should indicate METs you can do (the test is stopped or completed)an safely. I do 5 METs on a treadmill for a half an hour, 3 times a week.
Hope this helps.
Thank you for the prompt response. They did an EKG 3/30 at the cardfiologist's office for my one-week-after-second-stent-implant follow-up. The EKG's are always good. Oxygen saturation good. Heart beat strength 57 out of 60. My recovery time for shortness of breath is shorter each time. I think I may just be afraid since I was a heart attack waiting to happen when I went in and complained of pressure and pain a month ago now. Sorry, I am new to this; what is 5 METS? Are you talking about distance or a brand of treadmill? I am shopping for one for my home. What do you like?
If you have shortness of breath, fatigue, etc., you should see a doctor. Your symptoms are highly suggestive of heart failure, and if that be true and not treated, you could be damaging your heart cells. Your excess weight could be stressing your heart, there may be some occlusions with your stents or new occlusions.
I'm at the normal weight, I have a stent, 100% blocked LAD and 72% blocked circumflex for the past 6 years, exercise on the treadmill (5 METS) for a half hour 3 times a week and resistance training for 20 minutes as well. I take a nitrate prior to the workout to avoid any chest pain...no shortness of breath nor fatigue.
I had heart failure 6 years ago and my symptoms were identical to what you express.and admitted to ER and was shocked to hear I had had a heart attack. You should get checked out.