Reference Standards for Cardiorespiratory Fitness by Cardiovascular Disease Category and Testing Modality: Data From FRIEND.

Peterman JE; Arena R; Myers J; Marzolini S; Ades PA; Savage PD; Lavie CJ; Kaminsky LA;

Journal of the American Heart Association [J Am Heart Assoc] 2021 Nov 16; Vol. 10 (22), pp. e022336.
Date of Electronic Publication: 2021 Nov 08.

Background The importance of cardiorespiratory fitness for stratifying risk and guiding clinical decisions in patients with cardiovascular disease is well-established. To optimize the clinical value of cardiorespiratory fitness, normative reference standards are essential. The purpose of this report is to extend previous cardiorespiratory fitness normative standards by providing updated cardiorespiratory fitness reference standards according to cardiovascular disease category and testing modality.
Methods and Results The analysis included 15 045 tests (8079 treadmill, 6966 cycle) from FRIEND (Fitness Registry and the Importance of Exercise National Database). Using data from tests conducted January 1, 1974, through March 1, 2021, percentiles of directly measured peak oxygen consumption (VO 2peak ) were determined for each decade from 30 through 89 years of age for men and women with a diagnosis of coronary artery bypass surgery, myocardial infarction, percutaneous coronary intervention, or heart failure. There were significant differences between sex and age groups for VO 2peak ( P <0.001). The mean VO 2peak was 23% higher for men compared with women and VO 2peak decreased by a mean of 7% per decade for both sexes. Among each decade, the mean VO 2peak from treadmill tests was 21% higher than the VO 2peak from cycle tests. Differences in VO 2peak were observed among the age groups in both sexes according to cardiovascular disease category.
Conclusions This report provides normative reference standards by cardiovascular disease category for both men and women performing cardiopulmonary exercise testing on a treadmill or cycle ergometer. These updated and enhanced reference standards can assist with patient risk stratification and guide clinical care.