Immediate effect of various treatments on lung function in infants with cystic fibrosis

Respiration. 1989;55(3):144-51. doi: 10.1159/000195725.


The immediate effect of four different modes of treatment was assessed by lung function tests on 19 infants with cystic fibrosis (CF) during the first year of life. The regimens were applied in a randomized fashion and consisted of aerosol inhalation of salbutamol (n = 8; SAL), aerosol inhalation of N-acetyl cysteine (n = 5; AC), chest physiotherapy (n = 6; CPT), and combined treatment with aerosol inhalation of SAL and AC followed by CPT (n = 6; COMB). Pulmonary function was measured before and shortly after therapy with each mode of treatment. Thoracic gas volume (Vtg) and specific airway conductance (SGaw) were measured by an infant whole body plethysmograph, and forced expiratory flow at resting lung volume (VmaxFRC) was determined with a thoraco-abdominal squeeze jacket. There was no correlation between baseline lung function and changes in any parameter due to treatment. Overall group comparison showed that the combined therapy resulted in a significant improvement in lung function when compared to any of the three treatments applied separately. There was no significant change in lung volumes in any individual group, but SGaw and VmaxFRC showed a small but significant improvement following the COMB treatment when compared with AC or CPT.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acetylcysteine / administration & dosage
  • Acetylcysteine / therapeutic use
  • Administration, Inhalation
  • Albuterol / administration & dosage
  • Albuterol / therapeutic use
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Cystic Fibrosis / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Methods
  • Physical Therapy Modalities
  • Respiratory Function Tests


  • Albuterol
  • Acetylcysteine