The aim of the study was to determine the feasibility of using a breath-holding test in assessing the sensitivity of the peripheral chemoreflex compared with the single-breath carbon dioxide test. The study involved 48 healthy volunteers between the ages of 18-29 years. The breath-holding test was performed followed by the single-breath carbon dioxide test on the next day. A month after the first tests, these tests were repeated to evaluate their reproducibility The coefficient of variability in the single-breath carbon dioxide test ranged from 0 to 32% with a mean of 10±7%. The mean coefficient of variability of the breath-holding test was 6±4% (0-19%). A significant inverse correlation between the results of the two tests was noted following analysis (r=-0.82, p<0.05).
Conclusion: A breath-holding test after deep inspiration reflects the sensitivity of the peripheral chemoreflex as defined by the single-breath carbon dioxide test in healthy subjects.
Keywords: Breath-holding test; Peripheral chemoreflex sensitivity; Single-breath carbon dioxide test.
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