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J Lab Clin Med. 1985 Oct;106(4):428-32.

Modifications of lung clearance mechanisms by acute influenza A infection.


Four volunteers with naturally acquired, culture-proved influenza A infection inhaled a radiolabeled aerosol to permit investigation of lung mucociliary clearance mechanisms during and after symptomatic illness. Mucus transport in the trachea was undetectable when monitored with an external multidetector probe within 48 hours of the onset of the illness, but was found at a normal velocity (4.9 +/- 1.9 mm/min) by 1 week in three of the four subjects. In two volunteers who coughed 23 to 48 times during the 4.5-hour observation period, whole lung clearance was as fast within the first 48 hours of illness as during health 3 months later in spite of the absence of measurable tracheal mucus transport. Conversely, in spite of the return 1 week later of mucus transport at velocities expected in the trachea, whole lung clearance for the 4.5-hour period was slowed in two volunteers who coughed less than once an hour. The data offer evidence that cough is important in maintaining lung clearance for at least several days after symptomatic influenza A infection when other mechanisms that depend on ciliary function are severely deficient.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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