This study was designed to assess potential differences in ventilation homogeneity related to growth. One hundred thirty-three healthy subjects representing four stages of growth were studied: group 1, preschool, ages 34-74 months; group 2, préadolescent, ages 8-10 yr; group 3, postpubertal, ages 15-17 yr; group 4, young adult, ages 26-40 yr. Ventilation homogeneity was assessed by moment analysis of multibreath nitrogen washout with functional residual capacity, the ratio of the 1st to 0th moment (MR 1/0), and the ratio of the 2nd to 0th moment (MR 2/0) being the outcome variables of interest. Across the four groups functional residual capacity increased as a curvilinear function of height. At all heights functional residual capacity was larger in males than females and the slope of the regression was steeper in males than females (p < 0.001). Both MRs 1/0 and 2/0 were significantly higher in group 1 than the other groups, indicating that ventilation washout was less homogeneous in the preschool subjects than in older children or adults. Males of group 1 had significantly higher values for both moment ratios (more ventilation nonuniformity) than females. In the other groups there were no significant sex based differences although there was a trend for males to have a lower MR 1/0 than females in the young adults, p = 0.08. The results indicate that both age and sex are important determinants of the growth of distribution of ventilation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health