Lung function and bronchial responsiveness after bronchoalveolar lavage and bronchial biopsy performed without premedication in stable asthmatic subjects

Chest. 1992 Jun;101(6):1563-8. doi: 10.1378/chest.101.6.1563.


We evaluated tolerance, safety, and effects on lung function and bronchial responsiveness of BAL (4 x 50 ml) combined with BB (three to five specimens) performed without premedication in 13 mild and stable asthmatics and eight healthy volunteers. All subjects tolerated bronchoscopy procedures well and without serious side effects. During procedures, no supplemental oxygen was administered and no ECG abnormalities were noted. The PEFR was measured before and immediately after bronchoscopy and at 5-min intervals up until recovery. The maximal percentage fall in PEFR after bronchoscopy was significantly greater in asthmatics (23.1 +/- 13.9 percent) compared to normal subjects (7.8 +/- 8.2 percent, p less than 0.01). Changes in PEFR returned to baseline values within 120 min in all asthmatics. The tcPO2 was recorded at baseline, during and after bronchoscopy. In both groups, a significant change in tcPO2 was measured during the infusion of BAL aliquots, and persisted throughout the procedure. A significant difference in asthmatics compared to healthy subjects was evident during BB and at the end of the procedure (p less than 0.05). In asthmatics, M challenge was performed on three different days over a three-week period prior to bronchoscopy, and was repeated at intervals of 2, 6, and 24 h following procedure. The PC20 M values measured before bronchoscopy were found to have a very high reproducibility (intraclass correlation coefficient = 0.93). The PC20 values measured during experiment times after bronchoscopy were not significantly different from baseline values. These data demonstrate that in mild and stable asthmatics, BAL combined with BB can be safely performed following administration of only local anesthesia. In carefully selected asthmatic subjects, transient bronchoconstriction and a lowering of oxygen tension can be induced by BAL and BB, whereas changes in bronchial responsiveness are more unlikely to occur.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Asthma / physiopathology*
  • Biopsy / adverse effects
  • Blood Gas Monitoring, Transcutaneous
  • Bronchi / physiopathology*
  • Bronchial Provocation Tests
  • Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid / physiopathology*
  • Bronchoscopy / adverse effects
  • Forced Expiratory Volume
  • Humans
  • Lung / physiopathology*
  • Methacholine Chloride
  • Middle Aged
  • Peak Expiratory Flow Rate
  • Premedication
  • Time Factors


  • Methacholine Chloride