Content » Vol 47, Issue 3

Original report

Going places: Does the two-minute walk test predict the six-minute walk test in lower extremity amputees?

Lauren Reid , Penny Thomson , Markus Besemann , Nancy Dudek
Department of Medicine, Division of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, University of Ottawa, K1H 8M2 Ottawa, Canada. E-mail:
DOI: 10.2340/16501977-1916


Objective: Assessing a patient’s ability to walk the distance required for community ambulation (at least 300 m) is important in amputee rehabilitation. During the 2-min walk test, most amputees cannot walk 300 m. Thus, the 6-min walk test may be preferred, but it has not been fully validated in this population. This study examined the convergent and discriminative validity of the 6-min walk test and assessed whether the 2-min test could predict the results of the 6-min test.
Methods: A total of 86 patients with unilateral or bilateral amputations at the Syme, transtibial, knee disarticulation or transfemoral level completed the 6-min walk test, 2-min walk test, Timed Up and Go test, Locomotor Capabilities Index version 5, Houghton Scale of Prosthetic Use, and Activity-Specific Balance Confidence scale.
Results: The 6-min walk test correlated with the other tests (R = 0. 57–0. 95), demonstrating convergent validity. It demonstrated discriminative validity with respect to age, aetiology of amputation, and K-level (p < 0. 0001). The 2-min walk test was highly predictive of the 6-min walk test distance (R2 = 0. 91).
Conclusion: The 6-min walk test is a valid measure of amputee ambulation. However, the results suggest that it may not be necessary, since the 2-min walk test strongly predicts the 6-min walk test. Clinicians could therefore save time by using the shorter test.

Lay Abstract


Do you want to comment on this paper? The comments will show up here and if appropriate the comments will also separately be forwarded to the authors. You need to login/create an account to comment on articles. Click here to login/create an account.