V02 measurement involves being tested on a computer controlled treadmill or bicycle ergometer*, wearing a fitted face-mask, which allows the continuous analysis of respired Oxygen & Carbon Dioxide.
Subjects are encouraged to exercise to their absolute maximum, which usually takes around ten to fifteen minutes dependent on one’s fitness.
Evidence accumulated over the past thirty years has firmly established the low levels of CRF are associated with a high risk of heart attack & stroke, as well as the risk from certain cancers, especially breast & colorectal.
The future risk of Metabolic conditions such as Diabetes, Mental health issues such as Anxiety/ Depression & the scourge that is Dementia may be reduced by a relatively small improvement in VO2 Peak. Although recognised as an important marker of health, it is currently the only major risk factor not routinely assessed in clinical practice.
CRF is as strong a predictor of premature death as smoking, raised blood pressure, a high cholesterol or type two diabetes. A CRF of below 5 METS is associated with a high risk of premature mortality. One MET is approximately the amount of energy used at rest. A small increase of 1 to 2 METS is associated with at least a 10% reduction in heart attack & stroke.
CRF is the single best predictor of cardiovasular risk & premature death as it tests heart & lung function, the ability of the circulation to deliver oxygen to the muscles & their abilty to function normally.
Although influenced by genetic make-up & age it can be improved in most individuals with huge health benefit, without resorting to the use of medication!
HIGHER LEVELS OF CRF ARE ASSOCIATED WITH IMPROVED OUTCOMES FOR CERTAIN FORMS OF CANCER, SURGICAL RISK, DEMENTIA, DEPRESSION, TYPE TWO DIABETES & THE METABOLIC SYNDROME.
*Subjects with difficulty walking or unsteadiness are advised to be tested on the cycle ergometer.
ADVANCED HEALTH TEST – WHAT HAPPENS?
A proforma history, medication & lifestyle questionnaire will be completed on line prior to your appointment. Heavy exertion should be avoided within the 24 hours prior to your test & no food consumed within three hours of testing.
A pulse monitor is worn throughout the test. A face-mask is fitted to allow continuous gas analysis during the test using Metalyser Sport which is calbrated prior to each test. The CRF is measured using either a treadmil or cycle egrometer with a gradually increasing work-load following a gentle warm-up.
Light comfortable clothing should be worn & trainers recommended.
Preliminary results are discussed with the supervising clinician regarding future lifestyle improvement.
A completed report with further advice will be e-mailed within two days of the test and recommendation for follow-up testing to monitor improvement where appropriate.
A pre-appointment online questionnaire is sent which allows full assessment of current diet and activity.
Current and past medical problems are recorded as well as social behaviour with medication use both prescribed and purchased.
The clinic visit will document : –
BMI, Waist circumference Body fat using both Calliper measurement and electrical impedance
Resting pulse rate, blood pressure and oxygen saturation
Additional vital signs that are rarely measured
Grip strength an extremely important measurement used to exclude Sarcopenia (poorly functioning muscles)
An age-appropriate normal value reduces the risk of developing Dementia, Type 2 Diabetes and Heart Failure.
Chair stand test a low value indicates a high risk of falls
Walking speed a measurement that has huge prognostic value in avoiding future disease
Ample time will be allowed to enable full discussion of current identified problems, with an agreed future lifestyle plan.
A written report will be produced and sent within two days.