Bronchoconstriction: a component of the ‘diving response’ in man

  • M. R. Mukhtar
  • J. M. Patrick
Article

Summary

We have investigated the possibility that a bronchoconstriction accompanies the vagally-mediated bradycardia induced in man by immersion of the face in cold water. Forced expiratory flows (FEF) at 40% and 25% of vital capacity (VC) have been measured from partial flow-volume curves obtained during forced expirations starting at 70% VC. These were performed immediately after 15 s apnoea with or without face immersion, and compared with control expirations having the same volume history but without the preceding apnoea. Five of the 10 subjects showed evidence of a greater than 10% reduction in FEF, which averaged 17% (Fig. 2). Half the response was attributable to the apnoea alone and the other half, which was abolished by ipratropium, to cold face immersion (Fig. 3). This bronchoconstriction appears to be a new component of the ‘diving response’ in man, mediated, like the bradycardia, by vagal efferents.

Key words

Diving Apnoea Face immersion Bronchoconstriction Ipratropium 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Andersen HT (1966) Physiological adaptations in diving vertebrates. Physiol Rev 46: 212–243Google Scholar
  2. Bouhuys A, Jonson B (1967) Alveolar pressure, airflow rate, and lung inflation in man. J Appl Physiol 22: 1086–1100Google Scholar
  3. Davey IS, Cotes JE, Reed JW (1983) Does diving exposure induce airflow obstruction? Clin Sci 65: 48Google Scholar
  4. Finley JP, Bonet JF, Waxman MB (1979) Autonomic pathways responsible for bradycardia on facial immersion. J Appl Physiol 47: 1218–22Google Scholar
  5. Gooden BA, Lehman RG, Pym J (1970) Role of the face in the cardiovascular responses to total immersion. Aust J Exp Biol Med Sci 48: 687–90Google Scholar
  6. Harver A, Kotses H (1984) Pulmonary changes induced by frontal EMG training. Biol Psychology 18: 3–10Google Scholar
  7. Higenbottam T, Clark TJH (1981) Influence of breath holding at total lung capacity on maximal expiratory flow measurements. Clin Sci 60: 11–15Google Scholar
  8. Irving L (1963) Bradycardia in human divers. J Appl Physiol 18: 489–491Google Scholar
  9. Lewis RA, Lewis MN, Tattersfield AE (1981) Psychologically induced bronchoconstriction: is it caused by airway cooling? Thorax 36: 712–3Google Scholar
  10. Keatinge WR, McIlroy MB, Goldfien A (1964) Cardiovascular responses to ice-cold showers. J Appl Physiol 19: 1145–50Google Scholar
  11. Keatinge WR, Nadel JA (1965) Immediate respiratory response to sudden cooling of the skin. J Appl Physiol 20: 65–69Google Scholar
  12. Sturani C, Sturani A, Tosi I, Schiavina M, Gunella G (1983) Diving response: a simple test of parasympathetic activity in asthma. Comparison with airways responsiveness to inhaled metacholine. Bull Eur Physiopath Respir 19: 5Google Scholar
  13. Wildenthal K, Leshin SJ, Atkins JM, Skelton CL (1975) The diving reflex used to treat paroxysmal atrial tachycardia. Lancet i: 12–14Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. R. Mukhtar
    • 1
  • J. M. Patrick
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Physiology and PharmacologyUniversity Medical School, Queen's Medical CentreClifton BoulevardGreat Britain

Personalised recommendations