Effect of bronchial thermoplasty on airway distensibility

R. H. Brown, W. Wizeman, C. Danek, W. Mitzner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Recent studies have reported that the application of thermal energy delivered through a bronchoscope (bronchial thermoplasty) impairs the ability of airways to narrow in response to methacholine. How such altered smooth muscle affects the response of airways to lung inflation may have important clinical implications, particularly as it relates to the abnormal response of asthmatic subjects to lung inflation and deep inspiration. The aim of this study was to examine whether bronchial thermoplasty affected airway distension with lung inflation in relaxed and contracted airways. A total of 230 airways were studied, ranging 2.5-15 mm, in six dogs. These airways were divided into two groups: an untreated (control) population and a bronchial thermoplasty-treated population. Prior to treatment, the airway pressure-area curves in the two groups of airways were identical. In contrast, the relaxed and contracted airway pressure-area curves in treated airways were shifted upward at all points, showing increased airway area at both 3 and 5 weeks post-treatment. In conclusion, these results show that reducing that amount of functional smooth muscle with bronchial thermoplasty leads to increased airway size in both relaxed and contracted states over a normal range of inflation pressures. Copyright

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)277-282
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Respiratory Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2005


  • Airway smooth muscle
  • Airway structure
  • Asthma
  • Lung mechanics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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