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The quantitative link of lung clearance index to bronchial segments affected by bronchiectasis
  1. Sylvia Verbanck1,
  2. Gregory G King2,
  3. Wenxiao Zhou3,
  4. Anne Miller3,
  5. Cindy Thamrin2,
  6. Daniel Schuermans1,
  7. Bart Ilsen4,
  8. Caroline W Ernst4,
  9. Johan de Mey4,
  10. Walter Vincken1,
  11. Eef Vanderhelst1
  1. 1 Respiratory Division, University Hospital UZBrussel, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Brussel, Belgium
  2. 2 Woolcock Institute of Medical Research, The University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  3. 3 Department of Radiology and Nuclear Medicine, North Shore Hospital, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  4. 4 Department of Radiology, University Hospital UZBrussel, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Brussels, Belgium
  1. Correspondence to Dr Sylvia Verbanck, Respiratory Division, University Hospital UZBrussel, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Laarbeeklaan 101, Brussels 1090, Belgium; sylvia.verbanck{at}


In adult patients with cystic fibrosis (CF), the lung clearance index (LCI) derived from the multiple breath washout relates to both acinar and conductive ventilation heterogeneity. The latter component predicts an association between LCI and the number of bronchial segments affected by bronchiectasis. Here, we experimentally demonstrated this association in patients with CF, and also examined an ancillary group of patients with non-CF bronchiectasis. We conclude that lung disease severity in terms of number of bronchial segments results in an associated LCI increase, likely constituting a portion of LCI that cannot be reversed by treatment in patients with CF lung disease.

  • Cystic Fibrosis
  • Bronchiectasis
  • Exhaled Airway Markers
  • Respiratory Measurement
  • Imaging/CT MRI
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  • Contributors SV and EV: designed the study and drafted the manuscript. DS, BI, CWE and JdM: performed data analysis at the Brussels site. GGK, WZ, AM and CT: performed data analysis at the Sydney site. SV, CT, GGK, WV and EV: supervised the study and reviewed the final manuscript version.

  • Funding This project was supported by the Fund for Scientific Research-Flanders (FWO-Vlaanderen, Belgium).

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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