Background: Vocal cord dysfunction can coexist with or masquerade as asthma. Vocal cord dysfunction, when coexistent with asthma, contributes substantially to the refractory nature of the respiratory problem.
Objective: To report a case of an asthmatic patient with vocal cord dysfunction and a previously unreported unique expiratory flow volume curve.
Results: A 16-year-old female, known to have asthma, developed increased frequency of her asthma exacerbations. Spirometry, during symptoms, showed an extrathoracic airway obstruction with a reproducible unique abrupt drop and rise in the expiratory flow volume loop. Laryngoscopy showed adduction of the vocal cords during inspiration and expiration.
Conclusions: We report a unique expiratory flow volume curve in an asthmatic with vocal cord dysfunction that resolved with panting maneuvers. Speech and psychological counseling helped prevent future attacks.