A computed tomography-based approach revealed significant changes that indicate lung damage in some people with asthma. This study can lead to Treatments more personalized for asthma and even accompanied by persistent airflow limitation.

Doctors think that some people with asthma have declines in their lung function, called fixed airflow obstruction. ar (FAO). Hokkaido University scientists and colleagues have found that the problem in these people can extend to lung tissue.

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"Bronchial asthma is thought to be primarily due to inflammation and remodeling of the larger airways," explained Hokkaido University respirologist Kaoruko Shimizu. According to him, "not all asthmatics improve with the typical treatments prescribed to alleviate this condition."

The team applied a new approach based on computed tomography to detect changes in lung tissue. In this approach, the scientists examined CT scans that employ an index called “exponent D” for areas of reduced lung density. 

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The tests examined about 200 people with different degrees of asthma, who were followed annually for five years. In addition, the group included smokers and non-smokers. Therefore, the researchers found that people with asthma who experienced persistent airflow limitation, regardless of the severity of their asthma or their smoking status, had a constricted airway and also showed signs of lung tissue destruction.

Changes in lung tissue on computed tomography scans in the subgroup of asthmatic patients were not associated with typical inflammatory markers associated with bronchial asthma. "Future studies should investigate the importance of lung destruction in the pathogenesis of asthma, which should allow us to achieve more personalized disease management in the future," said Shimizu.

Source: Medical Xpress

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