What’s This Research About?

The authors reviewed research on the treatment of dysfunctional breathing. This is a difficult task because dysfunctional breathing is confounded by a lack of consistent terminology and lack of gold-standard assessment. For instance, one diagnostic tool, the Nijmegen questionnaire (NQ) was “developed and validated only in people with exercise induced hyperventilation syndrome (HVS) and its use has since been extrapolated” and used to diagnose all sorts of dysfunctional breathing. This is not an ideal protocol. There are also comorbid conditions such as asthma, anxiety, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD) and other respiratory ailments. For example, some people will test positive for HVS then after follow-up they are diagnosed with underlying uncontrolled asthma. Despite these weaknesses in the research, the authors tease out useful information and create a classification system to use in future clinical practice and research.

Other assessment tools reviewed: Self Evaluation of Breathing Questionnaire (SEBQ), end-tidal CO2, Manual Assessment of Respiratory Motion (MARM), breath holding time, Optoelectronic Plethysmography (OEP).

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