Journal Information
Vol. 45. Issue 167.
Pages 169-173 (July - September 2010)
Vol. 45. Issue 167.
Pages 169-173 (July - September 2010)
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Respiratory response to low-intensity physical exercise in women with chronic fatigue syndrome
Elisabet Guillamòa, Alicia Blázqueza, Agustí Comellab, Rubén Martínez-Rodríguezc, Rubén Martínez-Rodrígueza, Eduardo Garridod, Joan Ramón Barbanya, Josep Lluis Venturae, Josep Lluis Venturaa, Casimiro Javierrea,
Corresponding author

Autor para correspondencia.
a Unidad de Fisiología, Departamento de Ciencias Fisiológicas II, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad de Barcelona, Barcelona, España
b Unidad de Fisiología del Ejercicio, Hospital General de Catalunya, Sant Cugat, Barcelona, España
c Unidad de Anestesiología, Hospital Universitari de Bellvitge, L'Hospitalet, Barcelona, España
d Departamento de Ciencias Fisiológicas II. Facultad de Medicina (Campus de Bellvitge). Universidad de Barcelona. L'Hospitalet de Llobregat. Barcelona. España. Unidad de Medicina Deportiva. Hospital General de Cataluña (HGC). Sant Cugat del Vallès. Barcelona. España
e Unidad de Cuidados Intensivos, Hospital Universitario de Bellvitge, L'Hospitalet, Barcelona, España
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Article information

The aim of the study was to evaluate the cardiorespiratory parameters at rest and and as the response to very low intensity physical exercise in women with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS).

Material and methods

A group of 141 women suffering from chronic fatigue synrdrome (CFS) were compared with a control group (C) of 20 women while at rest and during 4 minutes of constant exercise on a cycloergometer with no work load (work load=0 watts).


Significant differences were found during the exercise: respiratory quotient (CFS=0.9±0.09, C=0.8±0.08, p<0.05); the respiratory equivalent for oxygen (CFS=34.6±10.1, C=28.0±3.4, p<0.01) and for carbon dioxide (CFS=37.9±7.7, C=33.4±3.8, p=0.01). Differences were observed in the heart rate during the rest period (CFS=86,8±14,2 beatsmin−1, C=79.8±8.4 beatsmin−1, p=0.03). There were no significant differences in the perception of effort made during rest (CFS=10.3±3.0. C=6.2±0.6, p<0.001) and just after exercise (CFS=12.5±2.8, C=6.8±1.4, p<0.01).


It was concluded that women with chronic fatigue syndrome had less ventilatory efficiency than the controls during low intensity physical exercise. This condition could be improved through specific rehabilitation programs.

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