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Am Rev Respir Dis. 1987 May;135(5):1075-9.

Total respiratory system compliance in asymptomatic infants with cystic fibrosis.


Total respiratory system compliance (Crs) was assessed by the weighted spirometer method in 11 asymptomatic infants (mean age, 11.1 months) with cystic fibrosis (CF) who had normal chest radiographs. In addition to Crs, functional residual capacity (FRC), respiratory rate (RR), and mixing index (MI) were measured. There was no significant difference in FRC between normal controls (n = 36) and CF infants (190 +/- 69 versus 186 +/- 63 ml; p less than 0.8), although the CF group had a higher RR (32 +/- 7 versus 37 +/- 7 BPM; p less than 0.05) and a lower MI (45 +/- 7 versus 40 +/- 8%; p less than 0.05), reflecting an abnormal distribution of ventilation. The lower Crs (9.0 +/- 3.4 versus 5.7 +/- 2.8 ml/cm H2O; p less than 0.01) and the lower specific compliance, Crs/FRC (0.049 +/- 0.013 versus 0.029 +/- 0.007 1/cm H2O; p less than 0.0001), in the CF group were the parameters that best distinguished the normal control and CF infants. We conclude that the measurement of Crs represents a noninvasive method for detecting early pulmonary function abnormalities in CF infants.

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