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Ups J Med Sci. 2013 Mar;118(1):59-61. doi: 10.3109/03009734.2012.704433. Epub 2012 Jul 16.

Guidance for a personal target value of F(E)NO in allergic asthma: case report and theoretical example.

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Respiratory Medicine and Allergology, Department of Medical Sciences, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden.


In clinically stable asthma the exhaled NO values (F(E)NO) are generally higher than in control subjects. Therefore, reference values are of limited importance in clinical practice. This is demonstrated in this case report, but it is also shown that NO parameters from non-linear modelling do have a clinical value. A subject with asthma was treated with inhaled corticosteroids for 1 week. The non-linear NO model was used to measure the response to treatment. The NO parameters from subjects with atopic rhinitis and asthma were fed into a computer program to generate theoretical F(E)NO₀.₀₅ values, i.e. target values. There was a dramatic decrease in F(E)NO₀.₀₅ due to treatment, from 82 to 34 ppb, but it remained higher than in healthy controls. This is due to the elevated diffusion rate of NO, unchanged by treatment. When the NO parameters are known, a personal best value of F(E)NO₀.₀₅ (fractional concentration of exhaled NO in the gas phase, 0.05 L/s) can be calculated, which can be the target value when only F(E)NO₀.₀₅ can be monitored. In conclusion, reference values for NO parameters are shown to be clinically useful. It is essential that every patient receives his/her target value of F(E)NO₀.₀₅, when only a single NO measurement is available. In our opinion, this is the reason why there are few successful studies of trying to target the NO value with inhaled corticosteroids.

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