lung function abnormalities in childhood asthma
Childhood asthma is a chronic respiratory disorder characterized by airway inflammation and hyperresponsiveness, which can cause lung function abnormalities. The following are some of the common lung function abnormalities observed in childhood asthma:
- Decreased Forced Expiratory Volume in One Second (FEV1): FEV1 measures the amount of air a person can forcefully exhale in one second. In childhood asthma, FEV1 is often decreased due to airway inflammation and constriction.
- Decreased Forced Vital Capacity (FVC): FVC measures the amount of air a person can forcefully exhale after taking a deep breath. In childhood asthma, FVC can be decreased due to airway inflammation, bronchial constriction, and reduced lung elasticity.
- Increased Airway Resistance: Airway resistance refers to the degree to which the airways resist airflow. In childhood asthma, airway resistance is often increased due to inflammation, bronchial constriction, and excessive mucus production.
- Reduced Peak Expiratory Flow Rate (PEFR): PEFR measures the maximum flow rate of air during a forced exhalation. In childhood asthma, PEFR is often reduced due to airway obstruction and bronchial constriction.
- Bronchodilator Response: Bronchodilator response refers to the improvement in lung function following the administration of a bronchodilator medication. In childhood asthma, a positive bronchodilator response indicates reversible airway obstruction, which is a hallmark of asthma.
These lung function abnormalities can be evaluated using various pulmonary function tests, including spirometry, plethysmography, and bronchial challenge testing.