Objective: Various numerical asthma control tools have been developed to distinguish different levels of symptom control. We aimed to examine whether the asthma control test (ACT) is reflective of objective findings such as lung function, fractional exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO) and laboratory data in patients with stable asthma. Methods: We included patients who were enrolled in the Korean Childhood Asthma Study. ACT, spirometry, blood tests and FeNO were performed in patients after stabilization of their asthma. We examined differences among spirometry parameters, blood tests and FeNO according to control status as determined by ACT and investigated for any significant correlations. Results: The study population consisted of 441 subjects. Spirometry showed that forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1), forced expiratory flow between 25% and 75% of forced vital capacity and FEV1/forced vital capacity were all significantly higher in the controlled asthma group. Likewise, FeNO and percent-change in FEV1 were both significantly lower in the controlled asthma group. In blood tests, the eosinophil fraction was significantly lower in the controlled asthma group while white blood cell count was significantly higher in the controlled asthma group. Lastly, among the various factors analyzed, only provocative concentration of methacholine causing a 20% fall in FEV1 significantly correlated with ACT score. Conclusion: ACT is useful as part of the routine evaluation of asthmatic children and should be used as a complement to existing tools such as spirometry and FeNO measurement.
- Asthma control test
- bronchial hyperreactivity
- bronchodilator response
- fractional exhaled nitric oxide