Tidal stresses are thought to be involved in maintaining airway patency in vivo. The present study examined the effects of normal stresses exerted by the lung parenchyma during tidal ventilation on recovery from agonist-induced airway constriction. In seven anesthetized dogs, one lung was selectively ventilated with a Univent endotracheal tube (Vitaid, Lewiston, NY). Airway tone was increased either transiently (intravenous bolus) or continuously (intravenous infusion) with methacholine (MCh). During one-lung ventilation, changes in the airway size of both lungs were measured for up to 40 min during recovery from constriction by using high-resolution computed tomography. After recovery to baseline, the alternate lung was ventilated, and the protocol was repeated. The absence of tidal stresses led to an attenuated recovery from either transient or steady-state airway constriction. The effectiveness or lack thereof of normal tidal stress in stabilizing airway size may be one factor that contributes to the lack of reversal with tidal breathing and deep inspiration seen in asthmatic subjects.
- Airway patency
- High-resolution computed tomography
- Lung volume
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physiology (medical)