Specificity and sensitivity of methacholine inhalation challenge in normal and asthmatic children

Russell J. Hopp, Againdra K. Bewtra, Nicki M. Nair, Robert G. Townley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

91 Scopus citations


The provocative dose of inhaled methacholine required to cause a 20% drop in the forced expiratory volume in 1 sec was evaluated in two selected pediatric populations. On the basis of a standardized respiratory questionnaire, 165 individuals 5 to 21 yr of age were identified. Included were 110 normal nonatopic individuals and 55 current asthmatic subjects. Methacholine inhalation challenges were performed by use of a standard inhalation procedure. Fifty-four (98.1%) of the asthmatic subjects responded to methacholine with a 20% drop in the forced expiratory volume in 1 sec. Seventy (63.1%) of the normal individuals did not respond to methacholine. The specificity and sensitivity of the methacholine challenge was best obtained at a provocative dose of 100 breath units of methacholine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)154-158
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1984


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology
  • Immunology and Allergy

Cite this