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Ann Thorac Med. 2018 Oct-Dec;13(4):212-219. doi: 10.4103/atm.ATM_22_18.

Assessment of proximal and peripheral airway dysfunction by computed tomography and respiratory impedance in asthma and COPD patients with fixed airflow obstruction.

Author information

1
Department of Medicine, Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care, Faculty of Medicine, Ramathibodi Hospital, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand.
2
Department of Diagnostic and Therapeutic Radiology, Division of Diagnostic Radiology, Faculty of Medicine, Ramathibodi Hospital, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand.
3
Department of Medicine, Division of Respiratory Diseases and Tuberculosis, Faculty of Medicine, Siriraj Hospital, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To ascertain: (i) if elderly patients with fixed airflow obstruction (FAO) due to asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) have distinct airway morphologic and physiologic changes; (ii) the correlation between the morphology of proximal/peripheral airways and respiratory impedance.

METHODS:

Twenty-five asthma cases with FAO and 22 COPD patients were enrolled. High-resolution computed tomography was used to measure the wall area (WA) and lumen area (LA) of the proximal airway at the apical segmental bronchus of the right upper lobe (RB1) adjusted by body surface area (BSA) and bronchial wall thickening (BWT r ) of the peripheral airways and extent of expiratory air trapping (AT exp ). Respiratory impedance included resistance at 5 Hz (R5) and 20 Hz (R20) and resonant frequency (Fres). Total lung capacity (TLC) and residual volume (RV) were measured.

RESULTS:

Asthma patients had smaller RB1-LA/BSA than COPD patients (10.5 ± 3.4 vs. 13.3 ± 5.0 mm2/m2, P = 0.037). R5(5.5 ± 2.0 vs. 3.4 ± 1.0 cmH2O/L/s, P = 0.02) and R20(4.2 ± 1.7 vs. 2.6 ± 0.7 cmH2O/L/s, P = 0.001) were higher in asthma cases. AT exp and BWT r were similar in both groups. Regression analysis in asthma showed that forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) and Fres were associated with RB1-WA/BSA (R2= 0.34, P = 0.005) and BWT r (0.5, 0.012), whereas RV/TLC was associated with AT exp (0.38, 0.001).

CONCLUSIONS:

Asthma patients with FAO had a smaller LA and higher resistance of the proximal airways than COPD patients. FEV1 and respiratory impedance correlated with airway morphology.

KEYWORDS:

Airway wall thickness; airway lumen area; expiratory air trapping; impulse oscillometry; respiratory impedance

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