Abdominal volume contribution to tidal volume as an early indicator of respiratory impairment in Duchenne muscular dystrophy

A. Lo Mauro, M. G. D'Angelo, M. Romei, F. Motta, D. Colombo, G. P. Comi, A. Pedotti, E. Marchi, A. C. Turconi, N. Bresolin, A. Aliverti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is characterised by progressive loss of muscular strength that leads to an increasingly restrictive pulmonary syndrome. However, it is still not clear whether this determines alterations in the breathing pattern. We studied: 66 DMD patients at different stages of the disease (mean ± SEM age 12.6 ± 0.6 yrs, range 5-22 yrs of age), subdivided into four groups according to age; and 21 age-matched healthy male controls. Spirometry, lung volumes and nocturnal oxygen saturation were measured in all DMD patients. Ventilatory pattern and chest wall volume variations were assessed by optoelectronic plethysmography during spontaneous breathing both in seated and supine positions. Whilst in a seated position, no significant differences were found between patients and controls or between different age groups. In the supine position, the average contribution of abdominal volume change (ΔVAB) to tidal volume progressively decreased with age (p

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1118-1125
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Respiratory Journal
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2010



  • Abdomen
  • Breathing pattern
  • Chest wall
  • Diaphragm
  • Duchenne muscular dystrophy
  • Hypoxaemia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine

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