The Pros and Cons of a One-Day CPET

The CPET is a test used by some people to document ME and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome while applying for disability. There are two kinds of CPETs: one day and two day. Learn more about How to Get a CPET (maybe)

The Upside of One-Day CPET

  • No travel. You may be able to get this test locally from a cardiologist or an exercise physiologist.
  • Less expensive than a two-day test.
  • May be covered by insurance.
  • Less exertion. One day of exercise instead of two.
  • If your test is performed by a cardiologist, Social Security will consider this an acceptable medical source.

The Downside of the One-Day CPET

💮  A local one-day CPET will not be performed by someone who specializes in ME or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. The person performing your test may be surprised by the results and may not understand why they are so different from a person without ME.

💮  The standard report from a one-day CPET will not include the same level of detail and analysis as a two-day. It may not include information on your level of functioning, or an analysis of your level of disability.  It may not include the type of information needed to be helpful for your disability case.

💮 Because the test is only one day, it will not measure Post Exertional Malaise and may not have test results that show the full severity of your condition. (Some people exercise the day before a CPET so that it will be a more accurate measure). For people who have moderate conditions, the one-day CPET test results may not show them as disabled.

💮  A one day test will not measure a decline in level of functioning. Typically, with a two day test, the test results can show that there are different outcomes on day one than on day two.

💮 Although probably less risky than a two-day, any kind of exercise or exertion can have the potential for a health risk for someone with ME.

💮 If you are applying for disability through your employer (LTD), some disability lawyers recommend taking a two-day CPET. The results from a one-day test may not be strong enough evidence. LTD companies sometimes request the raw data from a CPET. The raw data from a one-day test may not show the full extent of your disability.

Thanks for Reading

🌷 This page is part of the free online guide: The Sleepy Girl Guide to Social Security Disability 

🌷 Learn more about this topic here: How to Get a CPET (Maybe)

🌷 Art on this page by Robin Mead and Elizabeth D’Angelo.

🌷 Page Updated: 8/1/19

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