Volume 68, Issue 11 (4 2011)                   Tehran Univ Med J 2011, 68(11): 662-667 | Back to browse issues page

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O P, SA H, M P. The association between methacholine challenge test and respiratory symptoms: a study on 146 patients. Tehran Univ Med J 2011; 68 (11) :662-667
URL: http://tumj.tums.ac.ir/article-1-294-en.html
1- , amineh_hojati@yahoo.com
Abstract:   (14828 Views)

Background: Asthma is a life-threatening disease that can cause death due to bronchospasm. In addition to clinical symptoms such as wheezing, acute paroxysmal dyspnea, chronic cough after exposure to cold air or cough after exercise, spirometry is also necessary for the diagnosis of asthma. The association between respiratory symptoms and a positive methacholine challenge test (MCT) is still controversial. The aim of this study was to determine the association between methacholine test results and respiratory symptoms and allergy.

Methods: One hundred and forty-six patients with respiratory symptoms and normal baseline pulmonary function tests were enrolled in this cross-sectional study. The participants were divided into two groups according to their positive or negative response to MCT. The association between MCT and the clinical symptoms and allergy was later evaluated statistically.

Results: Out of 146 participants of the study 59 (40.4%) were female and 87 (59.6%) were male. The mean age of the participants was 33.8±13.8 years. Sixty-one patients (41.8%) had positive results for the test. There was an association between a history of allergy, wheezing and age with positive MCT results. The other clinical signs had no association with the test.

Conclusion: Methacholine challenge test is the best diagnostic test for ruling out asthma in patients with normal pulmonary function tests in whom we cannot definitely rule out asthma based solely on clinical symptoms. Nevertheless, in adults with a history of allergy, wheezing and also in patients below 30, the probability for a positive MCT is high.

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