Background: Respiratory muscle strength has been used as a tool for evaluating respiratory rehabilitation in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. However, mouth pressure measurement evaluated by maximum expiratory mouth pressure (PEmax) or inspiratory mouth pressure (PImax) offers an indirect method for measuring respiratory muscle strength. We demonstrated the evaluation of diaphragm contractility using a mechanomyogram (MMG), which is the mechanical signal generated by the motion of the diaphragm induced by the electric stimulation of the phrenic nerve. Methods: Study participants were 21 young and 20 elderly subjects with no symptoms of respiratory disease. The elderly subjects were divided into non-smoker or smoker groups. The smoker group was defined as subjects having a Brinkman Index of greater than 300. We measured basic spirometric parameters, mouth pressure (PEmax, PImax), and diaphragmatic MMG. Results: Diaphragmatic MMG showed more clear contrast between young subjects and elderly non-smoker or smoker subjects than the conventional method for respiratory muscle contraction (PEmax, PImax). In addition, the diaphragmatic MMG strongly correlated with inspiratory muscle strength. Conclusions: Diaphragmatic MMG may reflect diaphragmatic contractility more directly and sensitively than the conventional method.
- Electric stimulation
- Respiratory muscle strength
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine