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Are the small airways really quiet?

Authors
  • van de Woestijne, K P
Type
Published Article
Journal
European journal of respiratory diseases. Supplement
Publication Date
Jan 01, 1982
Volume
121
Pages
19–25
Identifiers
PMID: 6957308
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

The results of recent epidemiological studies and of functional-pathological correlations suggest that morphologic alterations, specifically inflammatory lesions, of the peripheral airways (with an interval diameter of 2 mm or less) influences the values of FEV1, of the FEV1/VC ratio and of the maximal midexpiratory flow rate, also in the incipient stages of these lesions. Between the so-called tests of small airways obstruction and FEV1 there would only be a difference in sensitivity. This implies that the small airways are not as silent as postulated previously. This is corroborated by measurements of resistance of peripheral airways performed on excised human lungs, showing that with normal lungs as well as in cases of airways obstruction, the peripheral resistance constitutes 50 to 90% of the total resistance between the main bronchus and the pleura.

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