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Asthma control in children: Body plethysmography in addition to spirometry.

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Published:5th Jun 2019
Author: Korten I, Zacharasiewicz A, Bittkowski N, Hofmann A, Lex C.
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Ref.:Pediatr Pulmonol. 2019.

Background: There is a lack of agreement among measures of asthma control in children. In Central Europe, body plethysmography is additionally used for asthma monitoring. However, its value is still unclear.

Objectives: We investigated the possible additional value of body plethysmographic measures (specific resistance, RV/TLC) compared with spirometric measures forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1), forced vital capacity (FVC), FEV1/FVC, forced expiratory flow at 25% to 75% of forced vital capacity (FEF25?75), and fraction of exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO) for assessment of asthma control.

Methods: One hundred and forty?five asthmatic children aged 5 to 17 were included. All children performed measurements of FeNO, spirometry, and body plethymography. Asthma control was assessed by the asthma control test (c?ACT/ACT) and a doctor's assessment of asthma control.

Results: Investigating single lung function parameters, FEV1, FEV1/FVC, FEF25?75 and RV/TLC differed between controlled and partly controlled asthma. However, we found no differences between controlled and uncontrolled asthma with regard to single lung function parameters or for any parameter if investigated in a multivariable approach. This was also true if we combined obtained parameters from spirometry (comparing pathologic vs normal spirometry). Investigating the combination of body plethysmography and doctor's assessment of asthma control a significant association was found (P = 0.02). Furthermore, combined spirometry and body plethysmography showed a significant association with both doctor's assessed asthma control (P = 0.009) and the c?ACT/ACT (P = 0.04). The addition of FeNO did not improve the results.

Conclusions: The combination of body plethysmography and spirometry shows best agreement with asthma control in children compared with spirometry or body plethysmography alone. Further studies are needed to find out whether additional measurements of body plethysmography improve the outcome of children in asthma monitoring.


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