The Union Health Ministry, in its latest set of guidelines, has dropped the use of Ivermectin, HCQ, Favipiravir from COVID-19 treatment. There is also no mention to take steam for the cure of COVID. However, guidelines have suggested a 6-minute walk test to Covid infected patients.
How to conduct a 6-minute walk test?
- A 6-minute walk test is an established simple clinical test to assess cardio-pulmonary exercise tolerance. This test is used to unmask hypoxia.
- Patient with pulse oximeter attached to his finger is asked to walk in the confines of his room for 6 minutes continuously.
- Any drop in saturation below 94%, or an absolute drop of more than 3% to 5% or feeling unwell (lightheaded, short of breath) while performing the test or at end of 6 minutes are significant findings. Such patients are labelled as positive for 6-min walk test.
- Patients with positive 6-minute walk test may progress to become hypoxic and hence early admission to hospital [for observation and oxygen supplementation] is recommended.
- The test can be repeated every 6 to 8 hours of monitoring in home setting.
- It should not be done in patients older than 70 years, those with uncontrolled asthma, pregnant patients.