Background: Many patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) experience dyspnoea during exercise, resulting in a reduction of physical activity (PA). Dynamic hyperinflation (DH) is seen as a major cause of dyspnoea in COPD. Objective: The objective of the current study was to investigate the relationship between DH, in terms of the amount of DH and the development and recovery rate of DH in patients with COPD, and PA. Methods: Thirty-five patients with stable COPD were included from an outpatient clinic (14 GOLD II and 21 GOLD III, median age 65). PA was assessed using an accelerometer. Subjects underwent metronome-paced tachypnoea (MPT) to induce DH. To quantify the amount of DH during MPT, a decrease in inspiratory capacity (IC) or a change in IC as percentage of total lung capacity was used. Results: No significant correlations were found between the parameters describing DH and PA. Secondary correlation analyses showed a negative correlation between static hyperinflation (SH) and PA (r = -0·39; P = 0·02). The pattern of breathing during MPT and the test itself showed high interpatient variability. Conclusions: The absence of a significant correlation between DH and PA is contrary to previous studies. SH did show a correlation with PA. The variety in results and the technical difficulties in execution of the measurements ask for a new, more reliable, method to detect DH and investigate its relation with PA in patients with COPD.
- Inspiratory capacity manoeuvre
- Metronome-paced tachypnoea
- Static hyperinflation