About Me

Treat Asthma using Breath Exercises

Respiratory or Breathing Exercise therapy is thought to improve symptom control in asthma. Various breathing techniques can be used, such as the Buteyko technique and yoga.

Treat Asthma using Breath Exercises


There has been a lot of scientific evidence showing the positive role of nonpharmacological management in various diseases, including improving quality of life without drug intervention that can cause side effects. This also applies to asthma, a chronic inflammatory disease of the airway characterized by wheezing, shortness of breath. , cough, and heaviness in the chest.

In the course of their illness, asthma patients may experience unpredictable exacerbations episodes and reduce the quality of life. Some people with asthma also have a more severe spectrum of disease, despite good adherence to therapy. It causes asthma therapy's complexity, and nonpharmacological management, such as breathing exercise, is expected to increase patient outcomes.

Efficacy of Breathing Exercise Therapy in Asthma

There are various types of breathing therapy that can be used to manage asthma, such as the Buteyko technique and yoga breathing techniques. However, studies examining the efficacy of these breathing techniques are still very limited.

Breathing Exercise therapy in asthma can be grouped into 3:
Therapy that aims to manipulate breathing patterns
Therapy increases the strength or stamina of the respiratory muscles.
Treatment aimed at increasing chest cavity flexibility and improving posture

Santino et al. reported that respiratory therapy generally focuses on tidal volume, increases relaxation, motivates patients to do independent exercises at home, and modifies breathing patterns with nasal breathing, holding breath, and using abdominal breathing.

A. Yoga

One type of respiratory therapy that can be used in asthma management is breathing therapy using movements from Yoga exercises. Examples of yoga breathing techniques that can be used by asthma sufferers are:

  1. pranayama (deep breathing exercises),
  2. Kapalabhati (breathing patterns),
  3. Bhastrika (rapid and deep breathing using the abdominal muscles),
  4. ujjayi (pranayama with a more intense voice),
  5. meditation,
  6. and Shavasana (relaxation therapy).

A study published in 2017 tried to analyze respiratory therapy's efficacy using the Pranayama yoga movement added to standard asthma therapy. The patient's quality of life was measured using the St. score. George's Respiratory Questionnaire (SGRQ). The study included 60 stable asthma patients who had received standard medical therapy for at least 3 months. The investigators concluded that respiratory therapy significantly improved the SGRQ score. However, this study did not analyze pulmonary function changes on spirometry, such as Forced Expiratory Volume in 1s, Forced Vital Capacity, or Peak Expiratory Flow Rate.

Another study by Sodhi et al. Involved 120 mild asthma patients randomized to yoga breathing therapy and a control group. In this study, the respiratory function was measured at baseline, four weeks, and eight weeks. The analysis showed a trend of the significant improvement in the group undergoing yoga breathing therapy compared to controls. Similar results were reported by another clinical trial involving 60 patients with mild to moderate asthma. Respiratory or breathing exercise therapy is reported to improve lung function significantly and is useful as an adjuvant treatment for asthma.


B. Buteyko

The Buteyko respiratory therapy was developed by Konstantin Buteyko based on the understanding that hyperventilation is based on bronchospasm in asthma, although this is not recognized pathogenesis of asthma. This is due to hypocapnia, which occurs during hyperventilation. In the Buteyko method, the principle used is to modify the breathing pattern to shallow breathing, reduce the respiratory rate interspersed with the controlled cessation of breathing, and encourage nasal breathing.

A systematic review conducted by Burgess et al. reported that respiratory therapy with the Buteyko method could improve the quality of life of people with asthma, and reduce the need for 2-agonists such as salbutamol. However, Burgess et al. also reported that the Buteyko method did not improve lung function as measured by peak expiratory flow rate, forced vital capacity, or forced expiratory volume in 1s (FEV1).

The benefits of using the Buteyko technique are still controversial. Considering that studies that report hyperventilation and hypocapnia are not the basis for asthma. Also, there was no evidence of changes in carbon dioxide levels with Buteyko therapy.


Recent Review Results Regarding the Efficacy of Breathing Exercises Therapy in Asthma

In March 2020, Santino et al. published a systematic review of respiratory therapy's efficacy in asthma in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. This review is an update from a previous review published in 2013.

In this systematic review, nine new studies were included (a total of 1910 participants), bringing the total analyzed studies to 22 studies with a total sample of 2880 people. Of the total, 14 studies used yoga breathing therapy, four studies used breathing retraining, 1 study used the Buteyko method, 1 study used the Buteyko and Pranayama methods, 1 used the Papworth method, and 1 used the diaphragmatic breathing method.

The analysis showed that respiratory therapy improved the patient's quality of life three months after starting therapy. Respiratory therapy has not been found to help reduce asthma symptoms. However, it was found to reduce hyperventilation symptoms 4-6 months after beginning treatment. FEV1 was found to be increased in the group of patients undergoing breathing exercises. It should be noted that the quality of scientific evidence reviewed ranged from low to moderate. Studies with larger samples and better methodology are still needed before conclusions can be drawn.



Conclusion
Many previous studies have indicated the benefits of breathing therapy in the management of asthma. Respiratory therapy can be performed using a variety of methods, such as yoga and the Buteyko method.

Although scientific evidence regarding the efficacy of respiratory therapy is still limited, currently available scientific evidence suggests the potential of respiratory therapy as an adjuvant in mild-moderate asthma therapy. Respiratory therapy is reported to improve the patient's quality of life, reduce hyperventilation symptoms, and increase the value of forced expiratory volume in 1s (FEV1) on spirometry. It should be noted that studies with larger sample sizes and better methodology are still needed before more definitive conclusions can be drawn.

Post a Comment

0 Comments