The role of breathing training in asthma management

The role of breathing training in asthma management. Curr Opin Allergy Clin Immunol. 2011 Feb; 11(1): 53-7. by Bruton A, Thomas M. Faculty of Health Sciences, Highfield Campus, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK.

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: There is considerable public interest in the use of breathing modification techniques in the treatment of asthma. Surveys suggest many people with asthma use them, often without the knowledge of their medical attendants. Extravagant claims have been made about the effectiveness of some techniques, resulting in scepticism from orthodox clinicians. The evidence supporting breathing training for asthma was previously weak, and limited by the small size and methodological limitations of published research.

RECENT FINDINGS: The evidence base for the effectiveness of breathing training has recently improved, with reports from several larger and more methodologically robust controlled trials. These trials are reviewed in this study, and the findings placed in context. Trials have investigated a variety of breathing training programmes delivered by different therapists in different ways. All incorporate some instruction in breathing pattern, usually focusing on slow, regular, nasal, abdominal breathing and reduced ventilation, with patients instructed to practise exercises at home and when symptomatic.  SUMMARY: Current evidence suggests that breathing training programmes can be effective in improving patient-reported outcomes such as symptoms, quality of life and psychological impact; and may reduce the use of rescue bronchodilator medication. There is little evidence that airways physiology, hyper-responsiveness or inflammation is affected by such training. The optimal way of providing breathing training within the context of routine asthma care is still uncertain.

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About Rena Reese

Rena Reese is the Founder of Soul Salon International, an inspirational multimedia company,author of several inspirational titles and the host of The Soul Salon radio show. SSI offers coaching, consulting, books, and classes to support the physical and spiritual wellness of clients. Additionally SSI offers blog/web-design, fundraising support, and publishing as well as promo videos.
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