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Kellerer, Christina; Schneider, Antonius; Kluetsch, Klaus; Husemann, Kim; Sorichter, Stephan; Joerres, Rudolf A. (2020): Correspondence between Capnovolumetric and Conventional Lung Function Parameters in the Diagnosis of Obstructive Airway Diseases. In: Respiration, Vol. 99, No. 5: pp. 389-397
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Background: Capnovolumetry is of interest as a method for the diagnosis of obstructive airway diseases, requiring little cooperation from the patient. Objective: To help in the interpretation of capnovolumetric parameters, we aimed to identify their correspondence to conventional lung function indices. Methods: We studied 978 patients from a diagnostic study with complete functional data and the clinical diagnosis of asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), or no respiratory disease. Using path analysis, four capnovolumetric parameters (slope of expiratory phase 3, ratio of slopes of phases 3 and 2, volume of phase 2, and the ratio area/volume of phase 3) previously identified as predictors of airway obstruction in terms of spirometry and body ple-thysmography, were analyzed regarding their relationship to each other and the diagnostic categories of asthma or COPD versus control, or obstruction versus no obstruction. We then identified four lung function parameters showing relationships as much as possible isomorphic to those between capnovolumetric parameters. Results: The four capnovolumetric parameters were related to COPD and obstruction via both direct and indirect influences, but only two of them to asthma. Regarding the correspondence to lung function parameters, the slope of expiratory phase 3 corresponded best to the ratio of residual volume to total lung capacity, the ratio of slopes of phases 3 and 2 to forced expiratory volume in 1 s, the volume of phase 2 to forced expired flow at 50% of vital capacity, and the ratio area/volume of phase 3 to forced vital capacity. Conclusions: Our results indicated an intricate relationship of capnovolumetric parameters to each other and to airway obstruction, asthma, or COPD. The correspondence to conventional lung function measures seemed to reflect the entities lung hyperinflation, overall ventilatory impairment, bronchoconstriction, and ventilated lung volume, in that order. These findings might be helpful for clinicians in the interpretation of capnovolumetry.