C17S FREE COMMUNICATION/POSTER NEUROSCIENCE DISORDERS
The purpose of this study was to compare the cardio-respiratory responses of persons with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) during maximal exercise testing using four different modes of exercise. Six women with a definite diagnosis of MS (mean [range]; age = 47 yrs [38–60], EDSS = 4.6 [2–6]) and neurogenic lower extremity weakness evident by visible gait deviations underwent four maximal exercise tests utilizing a standard Adapted Bruce Treadmill Protocol (TM), a ramped cycle ergometer protocol (BI), and two modes of combined arm/leg ergometry, a total body cycle ergometer (SA) and a recumbant total body stepper (NU) to measure peak oxygen uptake and peak heart rate. Maximal exercise values were analyzed with a Repeated Measures ANOVA and Neuman-Keuls post hoc procedure with p-values adjusted for multiple comparisons (α = 0.05).
The greater maximal oxygen uptake and heart rate values obtained with SA and NU exercise suggest that combined arm/leg ergometry may be more effective exercise testing and training method for person with lower extremity weakness due to neuromuscular disease than treadmill walking or cycling.