INTRODUCTION: The cardiopulmonary exercise test (CPET) assesses maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max) and is commonly performed on a leg cycle ergometer (LC). However, some individuals would rather perform the CPET on an arm cycle ergometer (AC).
OBJECTIVE: The objectives of this study were to undertake a systematic review and meta-analysis of the difference in VO2max achieved by AC compared to LC in healthy adults and to explore factors that may be predictive of this difference.
METHODS: MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, and PEDro were searched in April 2015. The differences in VO2max (ACLCdiff) were pooled across studies using random effects meta-analysis and three different methods were used to estimate the ratio between the values obtained from the tests (ACLCratio).
RESULTS: This paper included 41 studies with a total of 581 participants. The mean ACLCdiff across studies was 12.5 ml/kg/min and 0.89 l/min with a mean ACLCratio of 0.70. The ACLCdiff was lower in studies with higher mean age and lower aerobic capacity.
CONCLUSION: There is linear association between the AC and LC values in healthy adults. The AC values were on average 70% of the LC values. The magnitude of this difference appeared to be reduced in studies on older and less active populations.
LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: 3a.
|Number of pages
|International journal of sports physical therapy
|Published - Dec 2016