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Exercise-induced bronchospasm among students of Tehran University of Medical Sciences in 2004

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Exercise-induced bronchospasm (EIB) is a clinical syndrome that affects 8–20% of the general population and 11–50% of athletes. Although a variety of testing protocols for the diagnosis of EIB have been pursued, the optimal algorithm still is lacking. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of EIB among students of Tehran University of Medical Sciences and to find out whether self-reported symptoms are sufficient to establish the diagnosis of EIB. A total of 463 students completed an EIB symptoms-specific questionnaire, followed by a 9-minute exercise test. Spirometric measurements were performed before, and 6 and 15 minutes after exercise. In our study, decrements of >15% in forced expiratory volume in 1 second or 25% in peak expiratory flow or forced expiratory flow at 25–75% from baseline values were defined as positive indications of EIB. The overall prevalence of EIB was 10.8% (15.94% in men versus 8.62% in women; p = 0.02). There was no significant difference between the students with and without EIB regarding body mass index, family income, and allergy frequency. The frequency of at least two out of the four symptoms of coughing, wheezing, shortness of breathing, and chest pain/discomfort among students with EIB was significantly higher than those without EIB (26.5% versus 15.1%, respectively; p = 0.04). The sensitivity and specificity of self-reported symptoms for EIB diagnosis were 26.5 and 84.9%, respectively. Although among all determinants proposed for EIB, respiratory symptoms are closely related to the disease, diagnosis based on only these symptoms is not recommended because of high false positive and false negative results.
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Keywords: Bronchial provocation tests; diagnosis; exercise test; exercise-induced bronchospasm; prevalence; questionnaire; spirometry

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: From the Sports Medicine Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

Publication date: 2007-05-01

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  • Allergy and Asthma Proceedings is a peer reviewed publication dedicated to distributing timely scientific research regarding advancements in the knowledge and practice of allergy, asthma and immunology. Its primary readership consists of allergists and pulmonologists.

    The goal of the Proceedings is to publish articles with a predominantly clinical focus which directly impact quality of care for patients with allergic disease and asthma.

    Featured topics include asthma, rhinitis, sinusitis, food allergies, allergic skin diseases, diagnostic techniques, allergens, and treatment modalities. Published material includes peer-reviewed original research, clinical trials and review articles.

    Articles marked "F" offer free full text for personal noncommercial use only.

    The journal is indexed in Thomson Reuters Web of Science and Science Citation Index Expanded, plus the National Library of Medicine's PubMed service.
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