The long-term effect of high-frequency chest compression therapy on pulmonary complications of cystic fibrosis

Pediatr Pulmonol. 1991;11(3):265-71. doi: 10.1002/ppul.1950110314.


A high-frequency chest compression (HFCC) device for clearance of mucous secretions from airways was tested in 16 cystic fibrosis (CF) patients with significant improvement in pulmonary function for the HFCC period, which averaged 22 months per patient. The device consists of a variable air pulse delivery system and a non-stretch inflatable vest worn by the patient to cover the entire torso. The patients perform 30 minute therapy sessions divided into 5 minute periods at each of six frequencies. Individual patient therapy time per day ranged from 30 to 240 minutes. Frequencies used by each patient were determined by measuring air flow at the mouth and calculated volume expired per chest compression during tidal breathing while receiving HFCC at frequencies between 5 and 22 Hz at 1 Hz increments. The frequencies that produced the three highest flows and the three largest volumes were selected for each patient's therapy. Ninety-four percent of patients' regression line slopes for percent predicted forced vital capacity (FVC) and forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1) became more positive during self-administered HFCC therapy as compared to slopes before HFCC therapy, when manual chest physical therapy was used. Two-sided t-test showed that the mean slopes were more positive for FVC and FEV1 during HFCC therapy than for the manual chest physical therapy period before HFCC therapy. The significance level for both FVC and FEV1 was at P less than 0.001.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Cystic Fibrosis / complications
  • Cystic Fibrosis / therapy*
  • Female
  • Forced Expiratory Volume / physiology
  • Gravity Suits
  • Humans
  • Lung / physiopathology*
  • Male
  • Mucociliary Clearance
  • Respiratory Therapy / instrumentation*
  • Vital Capacity / physiology