Prognostic Value of 6-Min Walk Test to Predict Postoperative Cardiopulmonary Complications in Patients With Non-small Cell Lung Cancer

Hyun Lee, Hong Kwan Kim, Danbee Kang, Sunga Kong, Jae Kyung Lee, Genehee Lee, Sumin Shin, Juhee Cho, Jae Ill Zo, Young Mog Shim, Hye Yun Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Background: The risk stratification value of the 6-min walk test (6MWT) to decide the feasibility of surgical resection is not well elucidated in patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and moderately decreased lung function. Objective: This study aimed to determine the role of the 6MWT in predicting postoperative cardiopulmonary complications in patients with NSCLC who underwent lobectomy and had moderately decreased lung function. Methods: The data were obtained from a prospective cohort study called Coordinate Approach to Cancer Patient's Health for Lung Cancer (CATCH-LUNG). Patients who underwent lobectomy for NSCLC were classified into two groups according to predicted postoperative pulmonary function (low-risk group or moderate-risk group); each group was then further classified into short-distance (< 400 m) or long-distance (≥ 400 m) groups according to a 6-min walk distance. The main end point of this study was the incidence of postoperative cardiopulmonary complications occurring within the first 30 postoperative days. A multivariable logistic regression model was used to compare the postoperative cardiopulmonary complications among the four groups. Results: The adjusted ORs for any postoperative pulmonary complications, postoperative cardiac complications, and postoperative cardiopulmonary complications in patients with moderate-risk/short-distance relative to those with low-risk/long-distance were 10.26 (95% CI, 2.37-44.36), 5.65 (95% CI, 1.39-22.90), and 7.84 (95% CI, 2.24-27.46), respectively. However, these complications were not different between the patients with moderate-risk/long-term distance and those with low-risk/long-distance. Among patients in the moderate-risk group, those in the short-distance group had a significantly higher risk of postoperative cardiopulmonary complications compared with those in the long-distance group (adjusted OR, 4.95; 95% CI, 1.37-17.93). Conclusions: Patients with NSCLC with moderate-risk/short-distance were at greater risk of developing postoperative cardiopulmonary complications; it may be feasible, however, for patients with NSCLC and moderate-risk/long-distance to undergo lobectomy compared with those with low-risk/long-distance. Our study suggests that the 6MWT could provide additional information in identifying optimal candidates for lung resection surgery of NSCLC. Trial Registry:; No.: NCT03705546; URL:

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1665-1673
Number of pages9
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2020


  • lung neoplasm
  • postoperative complications
  • respiratory function test
  • thoracic surgical procedures
  • walk test


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