Humming is an extremely effective way of increasing ventilation in the sinuses, according to Swedish scientists. As a result of their finding, the researchers hope to study whether daily episodes of humming can reduce the risk of sinusitis in patients susceptible to upper respiratory infection (URI). (Sinusitis, a common illness reported by 14 percent of the U.S. population, involves the inflammation of one of the paranasal sinuses, usually from URI.) The researchers, who tested 10 healthy males, ages 34 to 38, found that humming sped up the exchange of air between the sinuses and the nasal cavity and increased the nitric oxide (NO) rate by 15-fold. The researchers pointed out that proper ventilation is essential for the maintenance of sinus integrity, and that blockage of the opening between the two cavities is a central event in the development of sinusitis. From further larger-scale studies, they hope to show that their NO technique can offer an easy, non-invasive way of identifying persons who are at risk of developing sinusitis. The authors note that the current test to measure the degree the sinuses are open is invasive and somewhat cumbersome to perform. The study appears in the second issue for July of the American Thoracic Society's peer-reviewed American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.
Smoking by family members associated
with asthma diagnosis before age 6
Research showed that smoking by family members was associated with an increased likelihood a child in the home would be diagnosed with asthma before age 6. In addition, the number of young people who started smoking before age 15 increased significantly as the number of smokers in the house grew. To uncover the results, investigators measured lung function in approximately 4,000 black and white men and women who were initially ages 18 to 30 during 1985 to 1986. Follow-up exams were given to partic
Contact: Cathy Carlomagno
American Thoracic Society