Agreement between Cardiopulmonary Exercise Test and Modified 6-Min Walk Test in Determining Oxygen Uptake in COPD Patients with Different Severity Stages.

Vonbank K; Marzluf B; Knötig M; Funk GC;

Respiration; International Review Of Thoracic Diseases [Respiration] 2020 Jan 31, pp. 1-6. Date of Electronic Publication: 2020 Jan 31.

Background: In moderate-to-severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patients the 6-min walk test (6MWT) is often exhaustive and correlates with the incremental cycle cardiopulmonary exercise test (CPET).
Objectives: The aim of this study was to assess the agreement between oxygen uptake (VO2) measured during the 6MWT by portable equipment and incremental cycle exercise in COPD patients with Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) I-IV.
Methods: A total of 30 patients with COPD GOLD I-IV (14 patients GOLD stage I and II and 16 patients GOLD stage III and IV) underwent a 6MWT and an incremental CPET. Breath-by-breath analysis for VO2, carbon dioxide output (VCO2), and minute ventilation (VE) were measured during each test. Blood gas analysis and lactate measurements were performed before, during, and after the test.
Results: VO2 in COPD patients GOLD stage I and II was 16.2 ± 4.2 mL/kg/min measured by 6MWT and 20.5 ± 7.0 mL/kg/min measured by CPET as compared to GOLD stage III and IV (11.2 ± 3.7 mL/kg/min measured by 6MWT and 15.5 ± 4.3 mL/kg/min measured by CPET). No significant correlation in VO2 measurements could be found between both tests in COPD GOLD I and II (r = 0.17), whereas the VO2 significantly correlated in patients with COPD stage III and IV (r = 0.7).
Conclusions: A significant relationship between VO2 measured by 6MWT and CPET could only be found in patients with more severe COPD but not in milder stages. 6MWT and CPET provide different VO2 measurements in COPD patients. The two methods cannot be used interchangeably.