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Treating asthma with breathing modification techniques can improve quality of life

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Using breathing modification techniques can result in improved quality of life for people with asthma, researchers have found

Researchers undertook a randomised controlled trial to compare breathing training with asthma education.

Ninety-four people with asthma who were managed in primary care received three sessions of physiotherapist-supervised breathing training and 89 patients received three sessions of asthma education from an asthma nurse.

After six months the patients who had received breathing training had improved quality of life, less anxiety and depression and fewer problems with hyperventilation compared to those who had just received education. However the authors found no significant changes in airway inflammation between the two groups.

They concluded that although breathing training improved quality of life it was unlikely to result in a reduction in the use of anti-inflammatory drugs to treat asthma symptoms.

Thorax 2009;64:55-61

Further reading:

Asthma care in need of rethink
Patient-centred education benefits asthma patients

The role of asthma link nurses for schools

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