Article ID: 1212-18
Objective This study was performed to determine the usefulness of a newly developed spirometer for the quantitative assessment of dynamic lung hyperinflation (DLH) following incremental hyperventilation in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Methods The subjects were 54 patients with COPD and 25 healthy volunteers. Each subject was asked to hyperventilate for 30 s with stepwise increments starting at the resting respiration rate and increasing to respiratory rates of 20, 30, and finally 40 breaths/min while using a newly developed spirometer. The relationship between the observed inspiratory capacity (IC) reduction following incremental hyperventilation as an index of DLH and spirometry or the 6-minute walking distance was examined.
Results The IC did not decrease significantly from the resting IC, even when the respiratory rate was increased, in the healthy volunteer group. However, in the COPD patient group, the IC decreased with increases in the respiratory rate. Significant correlations were found between all IC parameters and the severity of COPD. A significant negative correlation was also found between the decreased IC and the 6-minute walking distance.
Conclusions These findings suggest that the quantitative assessment of DLH following incremental hyperventilation using the newly developed spirometer may be useful for the assessment of pathophysiological impairment in patients with COPD.