Chronic pruritus is a complex multifactorial symptom associated with many different diseases that represents a diagnostic and therapeutic challenge for physicians. In order to better manage chronic pruritus, a detailed medical history, individualized diagnostic procedures and treatment approaches are necessary. Treatment should not only take itch into consideration, but also scratching-induced skin le- sions and accompanying disorders such as anxiety, depression and insomnia. Various standardized questionnaires and scales have been developed to assist in the characterization and assessment of these parameters. Monodimensional scales (e.g. the visual analogue scale) represent a simple method for assessing pruritus intensity and are frequently used; however, they can easily be confounded and may indicate the level of satisfaction regarding the medical care provided rather than the itch course. The Dynamic Pruritus Score and Itch-Free Days questionnaire enable a closer assessment of patient responses to treatment. Because chronic pruritus has the potential to greatly impact the quality of life, it is important that physicians recognize it as a major issue. The Dermatology Quality of Life Index is an instrument that is used in a variety of dermatological conditions, but may be unsuitable for measuring pruritus of extracutaneous origin. The ItchyQol is a tool designed specifically for those suffering from pruritus. Additional tools, such as the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, take psychiatric comor- bidities into consideration. Recommendations from European (EADV-based Task Force Pruritus) and international (International Forum for the Study of Itch) expert groups focusing on assessment in- struments for chronic pruritus are also provided in this article.
Atopic dermatitis (AD) displays different clinical symptoms, progress, and response to treatment during early infancy and after childhood. After the childhood period, itch appears first, followed by formation of well-circumscribed plaque or polymorphous dermatoses at the same site. When accompanied with dermatitis and dry skin, treatment of skin lesions should be prioritized. When itch appears first, disease history, such as causes and time of appearance of itch should be obtained by history taking. In many cases, itch increases in the evening when the sympathetic nerve activity decreased. Treatment is pro- vided considering that hypersensitivity to various external stimulations can cause itch. Heat and sweating are thought to especially exacerbate itch. Factors causing itch, such as cytokines and chemical messengers, also induce itch mainly by stimulating the nerve. Scratching further aggravates dermatitis. Skin hypersensibility, where other non-itch senses, such as pain and heat, are felt as itch, sometimes occurs in AD. Abnormal elongation of the sensory nerve into the epidermis, as well as sensitizing of the peripheral/central nerve, are possible causes of hypersensitivity, leading to itch. To control itch induced by environmental factors such as heat, treatment for dermatitis is given priority. In the background of itch exacerbated by sweating, attention should be given to the negative impact of sweat on skin ho- meostasis due to 1) leaving excess sweat on the skin, and 2) heat retention due to insufficient sweating. Excess sweat on the skin should be properly wiped off, and dermatitis should be controlled so that appropriate amount of sweat can be produced. Not only stimulation from the skin surface, but also visual and auditory stimulation can induce new itch. This “contagious itch” can be notably observed in patients with AD. This article reviews and introduces causes of aggravation of itch and information regarding how to cope with such causes.
Atopic dermatitis (AD) is a common chronic skin disease that is characterized by intense pruritus and has high impairment of quality of life. AD is often described as “the itch that rashes, rather than the rash that itches”. Several studies suggest that mechanisms of central modulation play an important role in the development and maintenance of chronic itch. Therefore, treating the neurosensory aspects of itch is an important part in the management of chronic itch. However, little attention has been paid to the role of the central nervous system in the processing of itch in AD. Targeting itch-related anatomical structures in the brain with non-invasive treatments such as psychological interventions and transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) could have an antipruritic effect in AD. Therefore, in this review article, we discuss the current progress in brain imaging research of itch, as well as the efficacy of non-invasive interventions for itch relief in this patient group.
Itch is an unpleasant cutaneous sensation that can arise following insect bites, exposure to plant in-gredients, and some diseases. Itch can also have idiopathic causes. Itch sensations are thought to protect against external insults and toxic substances. Although itch is not directly lethal, chronic and long lasting itch in certain diseases can worsen quality of life. Therefore, the mechanisms responsible for chronic itch require careful investigation. There is a significant amount of basic research concerning itch, and the effect of various itch mediators on primary sensory neurons have been studied. Interestingly, many mediators of itch involve signaling related to transient receptor potential (TRP) channels. TRP channels, especially thermosensitive TRP channels, are expressed by primary sensory neurons and skin kerati-nocytes, which receive multimodal stimuli, including those that cause itch sensations. Here we review the molecular and cellular mechanisms of itch and the involvement of TRP channels in mediating itch sensations.
Chronic itch is a debilitating symptom of inflammatory skin conditions, such as atopic dermatitis, and systemic diseases, for which existing treatment is largely ineffective. Recent studies have revealed the selective neuronal pathways that are involved in itch sensations; however, the mechanisms by which itch turns into a pathological chronic state are poorly understood. Recent advances in our understanding of the mechanisms producing chronic itch have been made by defining causal roles for astrocytes in the spinal dorsal horn in mouse models of chronic itch including atopic dermatitis. Understanding the key roles of astrocytes may provide us with exciting insights into the mechanisms for itch chronicity and lead to a previously unrecognized target for treating chronic itch.
Toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN) is a severe adverse drug reaction characterized by necrosis of the epidermis. Its incidence is approximately 1 per million a year and average mortality rate is high at 25 -50%. TEN has a flu-like prodrome, followed by atypical, targetoid erythematous or purpuric macules on the skin. These macules coalesce to form flaccid blisters that slough off as areas of epidermal necrosis. Drugs such as allopurinol, sulfonamides, and carbamazepine are the most common causes. The human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-B*15:02 in Asians being administered carbamazepine and the HLA-B*58:01 antigen in patients of all ethnicities being administered allopurinol are known to be high-risk factors. Rapid diagnosis, discontinuation of the causative drug, and supportive treatment are essential for better prognosis and improvement of sequelae. Till now, systemic corticosteroids and intravenous immuno-globulins have been used as the most common active interventions; however, no gold standard has been established. In Japan, physicians follow a unique diagnostic criteria and treatment guideline to improve the diagnosis rate and streamline treatments. This may be a contributing factor for the lower mortality rate (14.3%). The efficacy of systemic corticosteroids, immunoglobulins, and plasmapheresis may have been beneficial as well. In Japan, TEN is defined as an epidermal detachment of over 10% of the body surface area (BSA), while the globally accepted definition established by Bastuji-Garin describes it as an epidermal detachment of over 30% of the BSA. In Japanese individuals, HLA-A*02:06, HLA-A*02:07, HLA-A*31:01 and HLA-B*51:01 may be linked to higher risks of TEN.
Background: IL-22 is an IL-10-family cytokine that regulates chronic inflammation. We investigated the role of IL-22 and its receptor, IL-22R1, in the pathophysiology of chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyps (CRSwNP).
Methods: IL-22 and IL-22R1 protein and mRNA expression in NP and in uncinate tissues (UT) from CRS and non-CRS patients was examined using immunohistochemistry and real-time PCR, respectively. Dispersed NP and UT cells were cultured with the Staphylococcus aureus exotoxins, staphylococcal enterotoxin B and alpha-toxin, following which exotoxin-induced IL-22 levels and their association with clinicopathological factors were analyzed. Effects of IL-22 on MUC1 expression and cytokine release in NP cells were also determined.
Results: IL-22 and IL-22R1 in NP were mainly expressed in infiltrating inflammatory cells and in epithelial cells, respectively. IL-22 mRNA levels in NP were significantly higher than those in UTs from non-CRS patients whereas IL-22R1 levels were conversely lower in NPs. NP cells produced substantial amounts of IL-22 in response to exotoxins. Exotoxin-induced IL-22 production by NP cells significantly and negatively correlated with the degree of local eosinophilia and postoperative computed tomography (CT) score, whereas conversely it positively correlated with the forced expiratory volume in 1s (FEV1)/forced vital capacity (FVC) ratio. IL-22 significantly enhanced MUC1 mRNA expression in NP cells. IL-22-induced MUC1 mRNA levels were significantly and positively correlated with IL-22R1 mRNA levels in NPs. Conclusions: These data suggest that imbalance of IL-22/IL-22R1 signaling regulates the pathogenesis of CRSwNP, including local eosinophilia, via alteration of MUC1 expression.
Background: The relationship between airborne particulate matter (PM) and pulmonary function in children has not been consistent among studies, potentially owing to differences in the inflammatory response to PM, based on PM types and sources. The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of airborne PM on pulmonary function in schoolchildren and its potential for an inflammatory response. Methods: Daily morning peak expiratory flow (PEF) was measured in 339 schoolchildren in February 2015. Interleukin (IL)-8 production was assessed in THP1 cells stimulated by airborne PM collected every day during the study period, and these IL-8 concentrations are described as the daily IL-8 levels. A linear mixed model was used to estimate the association between PEF values and the daily levels of suspended PM (SPM), PM diameters smaller than 2.5 mm (PM2.5), and IL-8.
Results: The daily IL-8 levels were significantly associated with those of SPM and PM2.5. A 0.83 mg/mL increase in IL-8 levels was significantly associated with a -1.07 L/min (95% confidence interval, -2.05 to -0.08) decrease in PEF. A 12.0 mg/m3 increase in SPM and a 10.0 mg/m3 increase in PM2.5 were associated with a -1.36 L/min (-2.93 to 0.22) and -1.72 L/min (-3.82 to 0.36) decreases in PEF, respectively. There were no significant relationships between PEF, SPM, and PM2.5.
Conclusions: These findings suggest that the effects of airborne PM on pulmonary function in school- children might depend more on the pro-inflammatory response than the mass concentration of the PM.
Background: Data on self perception of drug allergy in the general population are lacking. Epidemio- logical studies focus either on specific populations or document adverse drug reactions in general. Our objective was to document self-reported drug allergy in Greece, through a simple, informative internet- based questionnaire.
Methods: A questionnaire on drug allergy was accessible online for a 3-month period. Participants voluntarily answered 28 questions referring to: suspected drug, clinical manifestations, concomitant factors, received treatment, reaction's re-occurrence.
Results: A total of 2528 questionnaires were included in study analysis. Beta-lactams and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs were the most prevalent culprit agents (53% and 27.5% respectively) while half of the participants acknowledged skin manifestations as the most common symptoms. One out of three reported subsequent exposure to the drug presumed to be responsible for the reaction and 74.5% of those stated a new reaction upon re-exposure. Only 26.7% underwent allergological evaluation. Reactions manifested with respiratory or cardiovascular symptoms, parenteral administration of the culprit drug and personal history of allergy to agents of > 1 different pharmacological categories were associated with increased risk of hospitalization.
Conclusions: Allergic reactions to drugs are adverse events difficult to define and diagnose. A remarkable proportion of presumed as hypersensitivity reactions are not referred to allergists; therefore these pa- tients may be either re-exposed to potentially noxious drugs, or needlessly avoid whole classes of drugs as b-lactams for more costly or less appropriate treatments. Internet-based questionnaires may contribute to awareness programs concerning drug allergy and help improve proper referral.
Background: We assessed whether lung sound analysis (LSA) is a valid measure of airway obstruction and inflammation in patients with bronchial asthma during treatment with inhaled corticosteroids (ICSs).
Methods: 63 good adherence patients with bronchial asthma and 18 poor adherence patients were examined by LSA, spirometry, fractional exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO), and induced sputum. The expiration-to-inspiration lung sound power ratio at low frequencies between 100 and 200 Hz (E/I LF) obtained by LSA was compared between healthy volunteers and bronchial asthma patients. Next, post- ICS treatment changes were compared in bronchial asthma patients between the good adherence pa- tients and the poor adherence patients.
Results: E/I LF was significantly higher in bronchial asthma patients (0.62 ± 0.21) than in healthy vol- unteers (0.44 ± 0.12, p < 0.001). The good adherence patients demonstrated a significant reduction in E/I LF from pre-treatment to post-treatment (0.55 ± 0.21 to 0.46 ± 0.16, p = 0.002), whereas the poor adherence patients did not show a significant change. The decrease of E/I LF correlated with the improvement of FEV1/FVC ratio during the ICS treatment (r = -0.26, p = 0.04). The subjects with higher pre-treatment E/I LF values had significantly lower FEV1/FVC and V50,%pred (p < 0.001), and significantly higher FeNO and sputum eosinophil percentages (p = 0.008 and p < 0.001, respectively).
Conclusions: The E/I LF measurement obtained by LSA is useful as an indicator of changes in airway obstruction and inflammation and can be used for monitoring the therapeutic course of bronchial asthma patients.
Background: This study was done to compare the efficacy of a recently developed eosinophil-derived neurotoxin (EDN) ELISA kit (“BioTracer™ K® EDN ELISA Kit”) to a commercially available EDN ELISA kit (“MBL EDN ELISA Kit”) and demonstrate the usefulness of serum EDN measurement in young asth-matic children.
Methods: Forty-eight children with physician-diagnosed asthma (Asthma group) and 31 age-matched normal controls (Control group) were recruited from the Asthma and Allergy Center at Inje University Sanggye Paik Hospital, Seoul, Korea from January 2010 to September of 2012. EDN levels in each serum specimen were measured 2 times using the: 1) BioTracer™ K EDN ELISA Kit and 2) MBL EDN ELISA Kit at the Inje University Sanggye Paik Hospital laboratory. EDN level measurements in each serum specimen were compared.
Results: EDN measurements from the BioTracer™ K® EDN ELISA Kit correlated well with those from the MBL EDN ELISA Kit: r = 0.9472 at the Inje University Sanggye Paik Hospital laboratory. These r values were considered both clinically relevant (i.e., r > 0.85) and statistically significant (p < 0.0001). EDN measurements from both kits positively correlated with asthma symptom severity (p < 0.0001). No serious adverse events occurred during the study.
Conclusions: The BioTracer™ K® EDN ELISA Kit was accurate and useful in measuring EDN levels in young asthma patient serum. Because of our kit's distinct advantages and utility, we suggest this kit can be used for the timely diagnosis, treatment, and monitoring of asthma in asthma patients of all ages, especially those too young to perform pulmonary function tests.
Background: Excessive mucin secretion in the airway is an important feature of airway inflammatory diseases. MUC5AC expression is regulated by a variety of stimuli such as cytokines. Little is known about the role of interferon (IFN)-γ in MUC5AC expression in human bronchial epithelial cells.
Methods: Human pulmonary mucoepidermoid carcinoma cell line (NCI-H292) and normal human bronchial epithelial (NHBE) cells were used to assess the effects of IFN-γ on MUC5AC transcription.
Results: Transforming growth factor (TGF)-α and double-stranded RNA (polyI:C)-induced MUC5AC mRNA and protein expression was repressed by IFN-γ in a concentration-dependent manner. IFN-γ showed limited effects on TGF-α and polyI:C-induced activation of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK). A chromatin immunoprecipitation assay indi-cated that Sp1 bound to its cognate sequence located on the MUC5AC promoter. The Sp1 inhibitor mithramycin A inhibited MUC5AC mRNA expression, implying a critical role for Sp1 in MUC5AC in-duction. Importantly, IFN-γ impeded Sp1 binding to the MUC5AC promoter.
Conclusions: These results suggest that IFN-γ represses MUC5AC expression, disturbing binding of Sp1 to its target sequences.
Background: Inhalation studies suggested “protective” roles of exogenous prostaglandin E2, but the clinical relevance of endogenous prostanoids in asthma is poorly known. The objective of this study is to measure sputum levels of prostanoids in asthmatic patients to correlate with clinical indices.
Methods: Mild (n = 41) or moderate-to-severe (19) asthmatics and 27 normal controls were examined for pulmonary function (FEV1 and mid-forced expiratory flow), sputum cell differentials, and sputum levels of prostaglandins D2, E2, F2α, and thromboxane B2 measured by sandwich enzyme immunoassay.
Results: Each prostanoid level did not differ among the three groups. Sputum number of bronchial epithelial cells was greater in moderate-to-severe asthmatics than in the other two groups, suggesting epithelial desquamation. Levels of prostaglandin F2α, D2, and thromboxane B2 positively correlated with the severity of airflow obstruction in the 60 asthmatic patients, whereas prostaglandin E2 levels were unrelated to pulmonary function. The ratio of combined “contractile” prostanoids (prostaglandin D2/ prostaglandin F2α/thromboxane B2) to prostaglandin E2 was 2.5-fold greater in moderate-to-severe asthmatics than in controls (p = 0.001) or in mild asthmatics (p = 0.0002) but did not differ between the latter two groups. In the two asthmatic groups combined, this ratio positively correlated with the sputum number of epithelial cells. The combined “contractile” prostanoids levels positively correlated with prostaglandin E2 levels in controls and in mild asthmatics but not in moderate-to-severe asthmatics.
Conclusions: An imbalance in production, breakdown, or both between prostaglandin E2 and other prostanoids possibly due to epithelial damage may be involved in the pathogenesis of moderate-to-severe asthma.
Background: Sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) has received attention as a method for allergen immu-notherapy. However, the mechanism of SLIT has not yet been fully investigated. Therefore, we evaluated the effects of SLIT in a murine asthma model, sensitized by intranasal administration of house dust mite (HDM) extracts.
Methods: Female BALB/c mice were intranasally exposed to HDM for either 3 or 5 weeks (5 consecutive days per week). Mice were administered either low-dose (0.5 mg/day) or high-dose (5 mg/day) sub-lingual HDM extracts for 2 weeks, followed by an additional week of intranasal exposure. Airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR), bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) cell count, cytokine levels in the BALF and lymph node cell culture supernatants, and allergen-specific antibodies were measured. Lung his-tology was also investigated.
Results: In mice sensitized for 5 weeks, high-dose SLIT ameliorated AHR, airway eosinophilia and goblet cell metaplasia. In mice sensitized for 3 weeks, even low dose SLIT ameliorated AHR and airway eosinophilia. Th2 cytokine levels in culture supernatants of submandibular lymph node cells in high-dose SLIT mice decreased, whereas IL-10 levels increased. Total IgA in BALF increased in mice sensi-tized for 3 or 5 weeks, and high-dose SLIT also increased allergen-specific IgG2a in mice sensitized for 5 weeks.
Conclusions: These data suggest that earlier induction of SLIT in HDM-sensitized mice provides superior suppression of AHR and goblet cell metaplasia. The modulation of allergen specific IgG2a and local IgA might play a role in the amelioration of AHR and airway inflammation.
Background: Bilastine, a novel non-sedating second-generation H1 antihistamine, has been approved in most European countries since 2010. This study aimed to evaluate the superiority of bilastine over placebo in Japanese patients with perennial allergic rhinitis (PAR).
Methods: This randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel-group, phase III study (trial registration number JapicCTI-142600) evaluated the effect of a 2-week treatment period with bilastine (20 mg once daily), fexofenadine (60 mg twice daily), or a matched placebo (double dummy) in patients with PAR. All patients were instructed to record individual nasal and ocular symptoms in diaries daily. The primary endpoint was the mean change in total nasal symptom scores (TNSS) from baseline to Week 2 (Days 10-13).
Results: A total of 765 patients were randomly allocated to receive bilastine, fexofenadine, or placebo (256, 254, and 255 patients, respectively). The mean change in TNSS from baseline at Week 2 was significantly decreased by bilastine (-0.98) compared to placebo (-0.63, P = 0.023). Bilastine and fex-ofenadine showed no significant difference in the primary endpoint. However, the mean change in TNSS from baseline on Day 1 was more significantly decreased by bilastine (-0.99) than by placebo (-0.28, P < 0.001) or fexofenadine (-0.62, P = 0.032). The active drugs also improved instantaneous TNSS 1 h after the first and before the second drug administration on Day 1 (P < 0.05). The study drugs were well tolerated.
Conclusions: After 2-week treatment period, bilastine 20 mg once daily was effective and tolerable in Japanese patients with PAR, and exhibited a rapid onset of action.
Background: Omalizumab is effective and well-tolerated in children with moderate to severe allergic asthma. However, the effects of long-term treatment with omalizumab in this population haven't been well investigated. The objective of this study is to evaluate the long-term safety, efficacy, pharmacoki-netics and pharmacodynamics of omalizumab in children with uncontrolled severe asthma.
Methods: Thirty-eight Japanese children (aged 7-16 years) who completed the 24-week treatment core study were included in an uncontrolled extension study, in which treatment with omalizumab continued until the pediatric indication was approved in Japan (ClinicalTrials.gov number: NCT01328886).
Results: Thirty-five patients (92.1%) completed the extension study. The median exposure throughout the core and extension studies was 116.6 weeks (range, 46.9-151.1 weeks). The most common adverse events were nasopharyngitis, influenza, upper respiratory tract infection, and asthma. Serious adverse events developed in 10 patients (26.3%), but resolved completely with additional treatments. Incidence of adverse events didn't increase with extended exposure with omalizumab. Twenty-nine patients (76.3%) achieved completely-or well-controlled asthma compared with 9 patients (23.7%) at the start of the extension study. QOL scores, the rates (per year) of hospitalizations and ER visits were significantly improved compared with the baseline of the core study [39.0 vs 48.0 (median), p < 0.001 for QOL, 1.33 vs 0.16, p < 0.001 for hospitalization, 0.68 vs 0.15, p = 0.002 for ER visits]. Remarkably, the mean total IgE level showed a decreasing trend while exposure to omalizumab remained at steady-state.
Conclusions: Long-term treatment with omalizumab is well-tolerated and effective in children with uncontrolled severe allergic asthma. No new safety findings were identified.
Background: This study aims to evaluate the relationship between serum thymus and activation-regulated chemokine (TARC) levels with various clinicopathological conditions in patients with drug eruptions. The value of TARC in diagnosing drug-induced hypersensitivity syndrome (DIHS) was also examined.
Methods: Study participants included 84 patients who presented with generalized eruptions suspected to be drug-related, including DIHS, Stevens-Johnson syndrome (SJS)/toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN), maculopapular exanthema (MPE), erythema multiforme (EM), erythroderma, and toxicoderma. The correlation coefficients between serum TARC levels and clinical parameters in peripheral blood samples were calculated.
Results: Serum TARC levels in patients with DIHS were higher than those found in patients with SJS/TEN, MPE, EM, and toxicoderma. TARC levels had 100% sensitivity and 92.3% specificity in diagnosing DIHS, with a threshold value of 13,900 pg/mL. Serum TARC levels positively correlated with age, white blood cell (WBC) count, neutrophil count, eosinophil count, monocyte count, atypical lymphocyte (Aty-ly) count, serum blood urea nitrogen (BUN) levels, and creatinine (Cr) levels. It negatively correlated with serum total protein (TP), albumin (Alb), and estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR). Among these clinical parameters, blood eosinophil counts were most strongly correlated with serum TARC levels, with a correlation coefficient of 0.53.
Conclusions: Serum TARC levels are well correlated with blood eosinophil counts in patients with generalized drug eruptions, indicating that Th2-type immune reactions underlie TARC production. Serum TARC measurements also have potent diagnostic value for DIHS, with high sensitivity and specificity.
Background: Environmental exposure chambers have been used to expose subjects to aeroallergens to investigate the efficacy of prophylactic treatment with symptomatic agents in Japan. We first examined the therapeutic effect of bilastine (BIL), a novel non-sedative second-generation H1-antihistamine, in subjects with Japanese cedar pollinosis using an artificial exposure chamber (OHIO Chamber).
Methods: This was a randomized, double-blind, four-way crossover, placebo-and active-controlled phase II study (trial registration number JapicCTI-132213). Subjects were exposed to cedar pollen (8000 grains/ m3) for 2 h on Day -1 and 4 h each on Day 1 and 2. BIL 10 or 20 mg, placebo, or fexofenadine hydro-chloride (FEX) 60 mg was administered orally 1 h after the start of pollen exposure on Day 1. Placebo or FEX was administered 12 h after the first dosing. The primary efficacy endpoint was the sum of total nasal symptom score (TNSS) from 0 to 3 h after the Day 1 dosing.
Results: We enrolled 136 subjects and the sum of TNSS on Day 1 of the three active treatments was significantly lower than that of placebo and was maintained up to 26 h after the first dosing (Day 2). The sum of TNSS or sneezing score on Day 1 after BIL 20 mg was more significantly decreased than after FEX. Moreover, BIL showed a faster onset of action than FEX.
Conclusions: We demonstrated the efficacy, rapid onset, and long duration of action of BIL in subjects with Japanese cedar pollinosis exposed to cedar pollen using the OHIO Chamber.
Background: Computer-aided lung sound analysis (LSA) has been reported to be useful for evaluating airway inflammation and obstruction in asthma patients. We investigated the relation between LSA and impulse oscillometry with the evaluation of peripheral airway obstruction.
Methods: A total of 49 inhaled corticosteroid-naive bronchial asthma patients underwent LSA, spirom-etry, impulse oscillometry, and airway hyperresponsiveness testing. The data were analyzed to assess correlations between the expiration: inspiration lung sound power ratio (dB) at low frequencies between 100 and 195 Hz (E/I LF) and various parameters.
Results: E/I LF and X5 were identified as independent factors that affect V50;%predicted. E/I LF showed a positive correlation with R5 (r = 0.34, p = 0.017), R20 (r = 0.34, p = 0.018), reactance area (AX, r = 0.40, p = 0.005), and resonant frequency of reactance (Fres, r = 0.32, p = 0.024). A negative correlation was found between E/I LF and X5 (r = -0.47, p = 0.0006). E/I LF showed a negative correlation with FEV1/ FVC(%), FEV1,%predicted, V50;%predicted, and V25;%predicted (r = -0.41, p = 0.003; r = -0.44, p = 0.002; r = -0.49, p = 0.0004; and r = -0.30, p = 0.024, respectively). E/I LF was negatively correlated with log PC20 (r = -0.30, p = 0.024). Log PC20, X5, and past smoking were identified as independent factors that affected E/I LF level.
Conclusions: E/I LF as with X5 can be an indicator of central and peripheral airway obstruction in bronchial asthma patients.