Definition : Instruments designed to measure mechanical work (i.e., the amount of force multiplied by the distance over which the force is applied) or rate of work (i.e., power) including work produced by the force of muscular contraction performed by a muscle or group of muscles, typically under controlled conditions. Clinical instruments are typically associated with an exerciser (e.g., a bicycle, treadmill) that is usually an integral part of the ergometer; the variables measured by the ergometer depend on the associated exerciser. Ergometers measure the work exerted by patients on a treadmill by determining the speed and the ratio of the treadmill's elevation to its length (i.e., usually expressed as percent grade); those used with bicycles determine the work and power by measuring the force exerted during pedaling and the speed of the pedals. Bicycle and treadmill ergometers are used in tests intended to determine whether patients have cardiovascular or pulmonary diseases; they are frequently used in tests that include use of a stress exercise physiologic monitoring system.
UMDC code : 11592