A new unsupported upper limb exercise test for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

T. Takahashi, S.C. Jenkins, G.R. Strauss, C.P. Watson, Fiona Lake

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Abstract

PURPOSE: This study aimed to develop a new unsupported upper limbexercise test (UULEX) for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonarydisease (COPD).■ METHODS: The reproducibility of the UULEX was assessed in nine patientswith COPD who performed the test on three occasions. A comparisonof the UULEX and a supported incremental upper limb exercise test(SULEX) using an arm ergometer also was performed with 18 patientswho had COPD.■ RESULTS: There were no significant differences in the maximum values foreach cardiorespiratory variable and sensation of dyspnea between thethree repetitions of the UULEX, and all the variables showed highreproducibility. During the supported test, maximum values for thecardiorespiratory variables were significantly higher, but the ratio ofminute ventilation to carbon dioxide output was lower than during theunsupported exercise test. There were significant correlations forcardiorespiratory responses, arm muscle fatigue, and sensation ofdyspnea between the two tests.■ CONCLUSIONS: The findings suggest that the new UULEX test is areproducible and acceptable exercise test for patients with COPD thatcan be used as a simple method to evaluate upper limb function inthese patients. Further studies are required to determine the externalvalidity of the test and its sensitivity to interventions such aspulmonary rehabilitation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)430-437
JournalJournal of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation
Volume23
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2003

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