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Lung function from infancy to preschool in a cohort of children with cystic fibrosis

  • Researchers

    Lyndia C. Brumback, Stephanie D. Davis, Gwendolyn S. Kerby, Margaret Kloster, Robin Johnson, Robert Castile, Peter W. Hiatt, Meeghan Hart, and Margaret Rosenfeld.

  • Place of research

    University of Washington

  • Publication

    European Respiratory Journal / January 2013

  • Subjects

    , ,

  • We aimed to describe lung function in a group of children who had lung function tested both as infants and during the preschool years.

  • Why is this important?

    Few studies have evaluated lung function over time in this young age group. A better understanding of lung function may help to understand risk factors for worse lung function and help to develop better treatment strategies.

  • What did you do?

    We measured lung function up to 4 times in infancy (before age 3) and up to 5 times during preschool (ages 3 to 6) in a group of 45 children with CF at 6 centers in the U.S. Then, we tried to identify risk factors for low lung function.

  • What did you find?

    We found that a recent respiratory culture positive for Pseudomonas aeruginosa and recent cough are associated with lower lung function in infants and young children with CF. There are significant differences in lung function between children that remain to be explained.

  • What does this mean and reasons for caution?

    When children have Pseudomonas aeruginosa on a respiratory culture or a cough, they are likely to have lower lung function. This suggests that aggressive treatment of Pseudomonas infection and cough could potentially improve lung function. But, this idea would need to be tested in a clinical trial to know whether or not it is correct.

  • What's next?

    Further investigation of risk factors for low lung function in young children with CF may suggest future avenues for treatment strategies in this critical age group.