Physiological predictors of cardiorespiratory fitness in children and adolescents with cystic fibrosis without ventilatory limitation.

Burghard M; Takken T; Nap-van der Vlist MM; Nijhof SL; van der Ent CK; Heijerman HGM; Hulzebos HJE;

Therapeutic advances in respiratory disease [Ther Adv Respir Dis] 2022 Jan-Dec; Vol. 16, pp. 17534666211070143.

Objectives: [1] To investigate the cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) levels in children and adolescents with cystic fibrosis (CF) with no ventilatory limitation (ventilatory reserve ⩾ 15%) during exercise, and [2] to assess which physiological factors are related to CRF.
Methods: A cross-sectional study design was used in 8- to 18-year-old children and adolescents with CF. Cardiopulmonary exercise testing was used to determine peak oxygen uptake normalized to body weight as a measure of CRF. Patients were defined as having ‘low CRF’ when CRF was less than 82%predicted. Physiological predictors used in this study were body mass index z-score, P. Aeruginosa lung infection, impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) including CF-related diabetes, CF-related liver disease, sweat chloride concentration, and self-reported physical activity. Backward likelihood ratio (LR) logistic regression analysis was used.
Results: Sixty children and adolescents (51.7% boys) with a median age of 15.3 years (25th-75th percentile: 12.9-17.0 years) and a mean percentage predicted forced expiratory volume in 1 second of 88.5% (±16.9) participated. Mean percentage predicted CRF (ppVO 2peak/kg ) was 81.4% (±12.4, range: 51%-105%). Thirty-three patients (55.0%) were classified as having ‘low CRF’. The final model that best predicted low CRF included IGT ( p  = 0.085; Exp(B) = 6.770) and P. Aeruginosa lung infection (p = 0.095; Exp(B) = 3.945). This model was able to explain between 26.7% and 35.6% of variance.
Conclusions: CRF is reduced in over half of children and adolescents with CF with normal ventilatory reserve. Glucose intolerance and P. Aeruginosa lung infection seem to be associated to low CRF in children and adolescents with CF.