Exercise capability in heart failure: is cardiac output important after all?

Lancet. 1991 Mar 30;337(8744):771-3. doi: 10.1016/0140-6736(91)91381-4.


The exercise capability of 39 patients with severe chronic heart failure was assessed in several ways and compared with measurements of cardiac output. The relation between cardiac index and exercise tolerance measured on a treadmill was poor (r = 0.191, p = 0.245). However, exercise tolerance measured with a series of self-paced corridor walk tests showed moderate correlations with cardiac index (r = -0.404, p = 0.015 to r = -0.516, p = 0.001) and customary activity assessed by step counting correlated better with cardiac index (r = 0.537, p less than 0.001). Cardiac output therefore seems to be a factor determining patients' exercise capability when they choose their own walking speed but not when they undergo formal treadmill tests in the laboratory.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cardiac Output / physiology*
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Exercise Test / methods
  • Female
  • Heart Failure / physiopathology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Walking