Ventilatory lung functions and peripheral blood eosinophil count have proved valuable screening guidelines both in diagnosis and prognosis of asthma. Furthermore, blood eosinophilia differentiates asthma from other inflammatory conditions of the airways. The present study was planned to ascertain the role of absolute eosinophil count in impairment of ventilatory lung functions of asthmatic subjects (both sexes, aged 15-45 years) attending out patients department of Thoracic Medicine at Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre in (JPMC) Karachi. 30 healthy controls and fifty asthmatics were investigated. Ventilatory lung functions were recorded by Autospiro (Model - AS500) Spirometer, whereas, peripheral blood eosinophil count was determined by direct method. The data revealed absolute eosinophil count/ul 137.13 ± 17.81 and 201.86± 28.64 (Mean ± S.E.M,) in male and female controls respectively. The eosinophil count/ul in asthmatic counterparts were found to be 442.0± 48.52 (Mean ± S.E. M.) which were statistically significant (P<0.001) as compared to controls. The asthmatics exhibited a trend of decline in forced vital capacity (FVC), forced expiratory volume in first second (FEV1), FIEF 25-75, and peak expiratory flow rate (PEF) in relation to increasing absolute eosinophil count. The present data suggest the reciprocal impairment of ventilatory functions in asthmatics with an increase in absolute eosinophil count. It reflects the critical role of eosinophils in the spasm and inflammation of the airways.
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