Timed stair climbing to 20 m altitude identifies lung resection candidates with high exercise capacity

Maurizio Bernasconi, David Maree, Coenraad Koegelenberg, Florian von Groote-Bidlingmaier, Andreas Diacon, Chris Bolliger.

Author address: 

Division of Pulmonology, Department of Medicine, Tygerberg Academic Hospital, University of Stellenbosch, Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa


Background: Clinical evaluation for lung resection includes assessment of pulmonary function and maximum oxygen uptake (VO2max). A VO2max of 20ml/kg/min is considered sufficient for pneumonectomy. Stair climbing as a low-cost alternative to formal treadmill cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET), is attractive but lacks standardisation. Methods: We asked 40 lung resection candidates (bronchiectasis or aspergilloma, n=31; lung cancer, n=7; hydatid cyst, n=2) with FEV1 and/or DLCOc 15m/min had a VO2 peak of >20ml/min/kg during stair climbing and CPET. No patient with a FEV1 15m/min. Conclusions: Speed of ascent of >15m/min accurately identifies patients with a peak VO2 of >20ml/min/kg, thereby obviating the need for CPET in those patients.

abstract No: 


Full conference title: 

European Respiratory Congress
    • ERS 21st (2011)