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Chest. 2004 Oct;126(4):1060-5.

Adenosine bronchial provocation with computerized wheeze detection in young infants with prolonged cough: correlation with long-term follow-up.

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Pediatric Pulmonary Unit, Rambam Medical Center, PO Box 9602, Haifa, Israel 31096.



Chronic cough in babies is often associated with bronchial hyperreactivity (BHR). The objective documentation of BHR in babies is difficult, and acoustic methods have been described (provocative concentration of a substance causing wheeze) for conducting bronchial provocation tests (BPTs). We conducted a study to evaluate automatic computerized wheeze detection (CWD) in determining BHR in young infants with prolonged cough, and its correlation with the subsequent development of wheezing.


Infants aged < 24 months with prolonged cough (ie, > 2 months) underwent acoustic BPTs with the response determined by CWD and auscultation by a physician. Telephone interviews with parents were conducted after 1 month and yearly for the next 3 years.


A total of 28 infants who were 4 to 24 months old with prolonged cough were included in the study. Twenty of these infants (71.4%) had BHR as determined by a positive acoustic BPT result. In 11 of these 20 tests, the CWD occurred earlier, and in 9 tests it occurred at the same step as auscultation by a physician. Rhonchi or whistles often preceded wheezes. Seventeen of the 20 patients with BHR completed 3 years of follow-up. Of these, 14 had recurrent episodes of wheezing and shortness of breath, and 3 were well. Six of the eight adenosine-negative patients completed 3 years of follow-up and had no symptoms of BHR.


Acoustic BPT is a technically feasible test for the detection of BHR in young infants. CWD provides an earlier detection of wheeze than stethoscope auscultation. In our group of infants, a positive acoustic BPT result had high correlation with symptoms compatible with BHR over the next 3 years.

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