Prospective study confirms that bronchiolitis in early infancy increases the risk of reduced lung function at 10-13 years of age

R Riikonen, E Lauhkonen, S Törmänen, K Backman, P Koponen, M Helminen, K Nuolivirta, M Korppi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


AIM: This study evaluated children hospitalised for bronchiolitis at less than six months of age to see if they had reduced lung function in early adolescence.

METHODS: We have prospectively followed 166 children hospitalised for infant bronchiolitis in 2001-2004 at Tampere University Hospital, Finland. At 10-13 years of age, flow-volume spirometry was measured in 89 cases and 108 controls without infant bronchiolitis from the local population register. Parameters of flow-volume spirometry before and after bronchodilation were analysed.

RESULTS: Forced expiratory volume in one second/forced vital capacity (FEV1/FVC) after bronchodilation was lower in cases than controls. FEV1 was pathological - under the 5th percentile of the national references - in 25% of cases and 12% of controls (p = 0.020) before bronchodilation and in 18% of cases and 5% of controls (p = 0.003) after bronchodilation. FEV1/FVC was pathological in 25% of cases and 13% of controls (p = 0.034) before bronchodilation. Logistic regression, adjusted for current asthma and maternal smoking, showed that infant bronchiolitis was associated with pathological FEV1 before (odds ratio 2.4) and after (odds ratio 4.4) bronchodilation. The result was similar for positive respiratory syncytial virus cases.

CONCLUSION: Reduced FEV1 after bronchodilation was found in early adolescence after infant bronchiolitis, suggesting irreversible bronchial obstruction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)124-130
Number of pages7
JournalActa Paediatrica
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Administration, Inhalation
  • Adolescent
  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones/administration & dosage
  • Age Distribution
  • Bronchiolitis/complications
  • Child
  • Confidence Intervals
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Finland
  • Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Monitoring, Physiologic/methods
  • Odds Ratio
  • Prospective Studies
  • Respiratory Function Tests
  • Respiratory Insufficiency/epidemiology
  • Risk Assessment
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Spirometry/methods

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 1


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