Ergospirometry / Cardiopulmonary Exercise Stress Test

Ergospirometry is a valuable diagnostic procedure of the cardiopulmonary system (heart & lungs) and metabolism. When it is combined with a cardiac stress test it also referred as cardiopulmonary exercise test. Numerous medical fields have profited from this procedure: cardiology, pulmonology, sportsmedicine, surgery, orthopaedics, paediatrics are just some examples. It is a non-invasive and objective method that allows a very accurate assessment cardiac and pulmonary function in a quantified fashion. Which are the indications? Every diseases that affects heart, lungs and circulation causes an abnormal response to exercise. Ergospirometry is useful to help evaluate the cause of shortness of breath(eg heart vs. lungs). It is also useful and diagnostic in the following conditions: myocardial ischemia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, pulmonary embolism, exercise-induced asthma, unfitness, hyperventilation syndromes and many more.

Ergospirometry - cardiopulmonary-exercise-test

Cardiopulmoanry exercise testing to assess fitness

Which parameters are measured? During the test the following parameters are monitored or measured:

  1. Electrocardiograph (ECG – EKG – Electrocardiogram) during rest
  2. Electrocardiograph (ECG – EKG – Electrocardiogram) during exercise
  3. Blood Pressure
  4. Blood gases (eg PO2, PCO2)
  5. Lactate Acid
  6. Resting metabolic rate
  7. VO2max
  8. Exercise metabolic rate
  9. Exercise fuel utilization
  10. Aerobic threshold (LT)
  11. Anaerobic threshold (LAT)
  12. Fractional utilization of VO2max
  13. VO2max power at anaerobic threshold
  14. Heart Rate max, HRmax
  15. HR recovery
  16. HR zones
  17. Breathing Reserve
  18. VE/VCO2 Slope
EKG - ECG During Ergospirometry

EKG – ECG during cardiopulmoanry exercise testing

What is the clinical usefulness of ergospirometry in medicine?Cardiopulmonary Exercise testing is valuable in order to:

  • identify and evaluate heart status and diseases (eg ischemia)
  • identify and evaluate lung status and pulmonary diseases (eg exercise-induced asthma and COPD)
  • evaluate exercise capacity and fitness
  • identify the cause of unexplained dyspnea and determine the cause which limits activity
  • determine extent of impairment and disability
  • formulate exercise programs for reconditioning and evaluate rehabilitation programs
  • evaluate responsiveness to therapy in cardiac disease (eg heart failure)
  • evaluate responsiveness to therapy in patients with pulmonary disease (COPD, pulmonary hypertension)/li>
  • assess the severity and follow the course of interstitial lung disease (UIP, NSIP)
  • detect pulmonary fibrosis caused by chemotherapy and radiation

What is the usefulness of ergospirometry in sports?Exercise testing is a valuable method to evaluate athletes and assessing methods of improvement. It is useful test for all athletes from weight lifters to table tennis players to swimmers and runners.Each group of athletes has different types of training. Frequent evaluations should be made in order to examine their progression. During ergospirometry the following parameters are assessed:

Recovery heart rate

Recovery heart rate during ergospirometry

  • calorimetric analysis
  • fitness testing
  • training evaluation
  • training recommendations

Training Recommendations Training Recommendations derived form Ergospirometry[/captio