Diagnosis and Organic Causes of Symptomatic Hyperventilation

  • William N. Gardner


The term hyperventilation syndrome may be subject to variable interpretations, but hyperventilation and its hypocapnic sequelae exist as indisputable facts of respiratory psychophysiology. Hyperventilation implies an excessive stimulation to breathing, which can be due to a wide range of psychogenic, physiological, and organic disorders. Moreover, symptoms of organic disease may mimic those of hypocapnia, and hyperventilation may coexist with organic disease. It is therefore essential that full assessment for organic disease is performed in all patients with apparent hyperventilation. While Ley (Chapter 5) and Bass (Chapter 10) address directly the psychological and psychiatric aspects of hyperventilation, this chapter represents the approach of a physiologist and chest physician to this difficult and controversial subject.


Organic Disease Lung Function Test Alveolar Volume Chest Wall Movement Extrinsic Allergic Alveolitis 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • William N. Gardner
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Thoracic MedicineKings College School of Medicine and DentistryLondonEngland

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