Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Deep Breaths Reduce Wheezing, But Only In Non-Asthmatics

Date:
March 19, 1998
Source:
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions
Summary:
Johns Hopkins researchers have new evidence supporting a controversial theory that asthma is partially caused by the failure of deep breaths to relax constricted lung muscles enough to let in more air.

Johns Hopkins researchers have new evidence supporting a controversial theory that asthma is partially caused by the failure of deep breaths to relax constricted lung muscles enough to let in more air.

Hopkins researchers exposed asthmatics and non-asthmatics to a drug that makes lung muscles contract, as happens in asthma. They found that non-asthmatics could reduce their reaction to the drug dramatically by taking five deep breaths before exposure, but asthmatics experienced little or no improvement from the deep breaths.

The new finding, funded by the National Institutes of Health, will be announced this week at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Asthma, Allergy and Immunology. It reinforces the results of a 1995 study at Hopkins that used a similar test to show that prohibiting deep breaths increases asthma-like symptoms in non-asthmatics.

"If we can learn more about the mechanisms that create this relaxation of lung muscles, there's a good chance we will be able to use that information to develop new ways to monitor or treat asthma," says Alkis Togias, M.D., who led the study.

Asthma occurs when muscles that line air passages of the lungs become constricted, impairing breathing. Scientists have speculated this results from an unusual reaction by lung muscles to inhaled irritants or allergens, such as pollutants or pollen.

But Togias and others believe that lung muscles in asthmatics and non-asthmatics constrict the same way in response to irritants. They think non-asthmatics can use deep breaths to relax the muscles and open up air passages, while asthmatics can't.

To test the idea, Togias exposed 9 healthy volunteers and 8 asthmatics to methacholine, a drug that makes asthmatics wheeze but normally produces little or no reaction in non-asthmatics. By increasing the dose, Togias reduced non-asthmatics' ability to expel air from their lungs by an average of 25 percent. He also determined how much of the drug was needed to produce the same effect in asthmatics.

His team then exposed each group to methacholine three times. Each time the subject was asked to take no deep breaths for 20 minutes before exposure. On some occasions, though, they were allowed to take several deep breaths immediately prior to inhaling the drug.

Two deep breaths reduced the effects of the methacholine exposure by nearly 66 percent in non-asthmatics. Five deep breaths reduced the effects by approximately 80 percent.

For the asthmatics, though, deep breaths only produced a slight worsening of the methacholine's effects.

Other authors of the presentation were Trisevgeni Kapsali and Solbert Permutt.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. "Deep Breaths Reduce Wheezing, But Only In Non-Asthmatics." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 March 1998. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/03/980319071512.htm>.
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. (1998, March 19). Deep Breaths Reduce Wheezing, But Only In Non-Asthmatics. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/03/980319071512.htm
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. "Deep Breaths Reduce Wheezing, But Only In Non-Asthmatics." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/03/980319071512.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have issued new protocols for healthcare workers interacting with Ebola patients. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 21, 2014) The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has set up new guidelines for health workers taking care of patients infected with Ebola. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Cadaver Dog' Sniffs out Human Remains

'Cadaver Dog' Sniffs out Human Remains

AP (Oct. 21, 2014) Where's a body buried? Buster's nose can often tell you. He's a cadaver dog, specially trained to find human remains and increasingly being used by law enforcement and accepted in courts. These dogs are helping solve even decades-old mysteries. (Oct. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins