The effect of obesity on spirometry tests among healthy non-smoking adults

BMC Pulm Med. 2012 Mar 21;12:10. doi: 10.1186/1471-2466-12-10.

Abstract

Introduction: The effects of obesity on pulmonary functions have not been addressed previously among Saudi population. We aim to study the effects of obesity on spirometry tests among healthy non-smoking adults.

Methods: A cross sectional study conducted among volunteers healthy non-smoking adults Subjects. We divided the subjects into two groups according to their BMI. The first group consisted of non-obese subjects with BMI of 18 to 24.9 kg/m2 and the second group consisted of obese subjects with BMI of 30 kg/m2 and above. Subjects underwent spirometry tests according to American thoracic society standards with measurement of the following values: the forced vital capacity (FVC), forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1), peak expiratory flow rate (PEF) and forced mid-expiratory flow (FEF25-75).

Results: The total subjects were 294 with a mean age of 32 years. There were 178 males and 116 females subjects. We found no significant differences in FEV1 (p value = 0.686), FVC (p value = 0.733), FEV1/FVC Ratio (p value = 0.197) and FEF25-75 (p value = 0.693) between the obese and non-obese subjects. However, there was significantly difference in PEF between the two groups (p value < 0.020).

Conclusion: Obesity does not have effect on the spirometry tests (except PEF) among health non-smoking adults. We recommend searching for alternative diagnosis in case of findings abnormal spirometry tests results among obese subjects.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Forced Expiratory Volume
  • Humans
  • Lung / physiology*
  • Male
  • Obesity / physiopathology*
  • Peak Expiratory Flow Rate
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Spirometry
  • Vital Capacity
  • Young Adult