Lucas, J.S., Foreman, C.T. and Clough, J.B.
Measuring lung function in infancy
Respiratory Medicine, 94, (7), . (doi:10.1053/rmed.2000.0792). (PMID:10926334).
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Although the earliest reliable lung function tests in infants were performed as long as 40 years ago, there has only recently been a growth in this area, as simpler methods and better equipment and IT resources have been developed. Exciting information is accumulating about the normal physiology and pathology of the infant lung. Many basic questions are still unanswered and the ability to perform these tests remains confined to a few specialized centres. To co-ordinate the development of ILFT and establish standardization in a number of areas including measurement conditions, equipment specifications, methodology protocols and data analysis, international collaboration is necessary between the teams working in this field (Table 5). Collaborative groups are currently addressing these issues and are also developing recommendations regarding the design of randomized clinical trials, multi-centre studies and research agendas. Infant lung function testing remains primarily a research tool. Our aim should be not only to refine and develop the techniques of physiological measurement but to apply ILFT to the objective study of respiratory illness in infants in the clinical setting so as to aid in the prevention and treatment of these common, debilitating and costly diseases.
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