Effort and dyspnoea during work of varying intensity and duration.
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This study quantified the separate contributions of the intensity of exercise and its duration to muscular effort and dyspnoea during cycle ergometry. Six normal subjects estimated the perceived intensity (Borg scale 0-10) of peripheral muscular effort and dyspnoea during incremental exercise to their maximum work capacity (Wcap). On separate days, the same subjects exercised to endurance or 60 min at work rates rated for leg effort on the initial incremental test as: 2 ("slight", 33.1 +/- 1.45% Wcap) (mean +/- SE); 3 ("moderate", omission 83.6 +/- 3.87% Wcap). Perceived leg effort increased by a factor of 4.4 (2(2.13)) with a doubling of work rate and by 1.3 (2(0.39)) with a doubling of duration, as expressed by: Leg effort = k x %Wcap2.13 x Time0.39 (r2 = 0.87) Perceived dysponea increased 5.3-fold with a doubling of work rate and by 1.4-fold with a doubling of duration: Dysponea = k x %Wcap2.41 x Time0.47 (r2 = 0.75) Changes in work intensity, rather than duration, dominated symptom magnitudes such that in the performance of a given task, halving the intensity and doubling the duration of activity reduces the maximal intensity of muscular effort and dyspnoea to less than a third.
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