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Effects of a Flutter Mucus-Clearance Device on Pulmonary Function Test Results in Healthy People 85 Years and Older in China

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OBJECTIVE: To investigate the impact of a new flutter-type mucus-clearance device on pulmonary function test results in people ≥ 85 years old. METHODS: We conducted a randomized controlled trial with 60 people ≥ 85 years old. The subjects were distributed randomly into an intervention group and a control group. Spirometry was performed at baseline and after 28 days of using the flutter mucus-clearance device. We recorded peak expiratory flow (PEF), FEV1, forced vital capacity (FVC), and FEV1/FVC. The intervention group used the flutter mucus-clearance device during pulmonary exercises. The control group had no interventions other than routine healthcare. We recorded episodes of fever, antibiotic therapy, and hospital visits during the 28 days of the study. RESULTS: PEF, FEV1, FVC and FEV1/FVC showed no significant differences between the 2 groups at baseline. The mean ± SD baseline values were: PEF 103.2 ± 43.0 L/min, FEV1 0.98 ± 0.43 L, and FVC 1.76 ± 0.68 L. Compared to baseline, on day 28 there was no significant difference in PEF, FEV1, or FEV1/FVC, in either group. The mean ± SD difference in FVC between baseline and day 28 was 0.33 ± 0.30 L in the intervention group, and 0.20 ± 0.14 L in the control group (P = .03). There were no significant differences in the number of cases of fever, antibiotic therapy, or hospital visits between the groups. CONCLUSIONS: The new flutter mucus-clearance device improved elderly patients' FVC. (Clinicaltrials.gov registration NCT00881335.)

Keywords: China; flutter; geriatrics; mucus-clearance; physiotherapy; pulmonary function; vital capacity

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 2010

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