How can we best read exhaled nitric oxide flow curves in asthmatic children?

M. Silvestri, D. Spallarossa, E. Battistini, B. Fregonese, Giovanni A. Rossi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Orally exhaled nitric oxide (NO) levels are increased in children with asthma and thought to reflect the local inflammatory events in the airways. NO production in the lower respiratory airway is reflected in the plateau values of the NO curve, recorded while the patient is performing a slow vital capacity manoeuvre. In young patients, however, plateau values may be difficult to obtain, because the slow vital capacity manoeuvre is often terminated prematurely. In the present study, 60 steroid-naive atopic asthmatic children and 17 normal age-matched controls were asked to perform a slow vital capacity manoeuvre, during which fractional exhaled NO (FENO) levels were measured and evaluated as: a) FENO plateau levels of last part of exhalation (NO plateau); b) FENO peak values, c) area under the FENO curve (AUC). Thirteen out of the 60 steroid-naive patients were reevaluated after a short course of inhaled corticosteroid treatment. Independently of the type of data analysis, FENO values of asthmatics were significantly higher than those observed in normal controls (P <0.001, each comparison). In addition, possibly because of upper airway NO contamination, FENO peak values were significantly higher than FENO plateau levels in asthmatic patients and in control subjects (P0.7, P0.7, P0.9, P0.5, P

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)384-389
Number of pages6
JournalMonaldi Archives for Chest Disease - Cardiac Series
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Allergy
  • Asthma
  • Childhood
  • Nitric oxide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'How can we best read exhaled nitric oxide flow curves in asthmatic children?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this