Two professors at Southern Methodist University, Dallas, are expanding a study that shows promise for reducing both the expense and suffering associated with chronic asthma through breathing technique.

According to an announcement about the study, Thomas Ritz, PhD, and Alicia Meuret, PhD, both in SMU’s psychology department, developed a 4-week program to teach asthmatics how to better control their condition by changing the way they breathe. The study is part of SMU’s "[removed]Stress, Anxiety and Chronic Disease Research Program[/removed]".

Ritz and Meuret use biofeedback-based capnometry-assisted respiratory training (CART) to teach asthma patients to normalize and reverse chronic overbreathing. Patients use the capnometer to learn how to breathe more slowly, shallowly, and regularly. For their expanded study, the two professors plan to engage 120 Dallas County patients in the 4-week training with the help of a 4-year, $1.4 million grant from the National Institutes of Health.

“CART techniques could have a positive impact on the quality of asthma treatment even as they reduce the need for acute care,” said Ritz in the announcement.. "The research shows that this kind of respiratory therapy can limit both the severity and frequency of asthma attacks. That means fewer doctor visits and less frequent use of rescue medications, with the associated savings of both time and money."

Source: EurekAlert