Comparative analysis of the effects of two chest physical therapy interventions in patients with bronchiolitis during hospitalization period

Renata Remondini Adriana Zamprônio dos Santos Giselle de Castro Cristiane do Prado Luiz Vicente Ribeiro Ferreira da Silva FilhoAbout the authors


To evaluate and compare the effects of two chest physiotherapy interventions in patients hospitalized due to acute bronchiolitis.


Prospective randomized study with a sample of 83 calls for 29 patients aged between 3 months and 1 year hospitalized for acute bronchiolitis. Patients were distributed randomly into two groups: Group 1, submitted to postural drainage, tapping and tracheal aspiration; and Group 2, submitted to postural drainage, expiratory acceleration flow and tracheal aspiration. Assessments were made before and 10 and 60 minutes after the end of therapy. Patients also underwent drug treatment. The endpoint was to compare two physical therapy interventions as to clinical improvement in infants with acute bronchiolitis by means of oxygen saturation and the Respiratory Distress Assessment Instrument score. The parents/guardians was requested to answer a questionnaire about the treatment applied before the last evaluation in order to measure their satisfaction related to the interventions made.


The groups were similar regarding the use of antibiotics and bronchodilators. A greater number of patients used corticosteroids in Group 2. A relevant improvement was observed on Respiratory Distress Assessment Instrument score with physical therapy, with reduction of the score 10 minutes after interventions, and the same score 60 minutes later, with no differences between techniques applied. There was no significant variation of pulse oximetry after chest physiotherapy. Most items assessed by the questionnaire had satisfactory answers.


No differences were observed between groups regarding the items assessed (time required to discharge from study, pulse oximetry in room air and disease severity according to the Respiratory Distress Assessment Instrument score). Parents answered positively about the effects of therapy in the majority of items in the questionnaire, both for the expiratory acceleration flow technique and for tapping.

Bronchiolitis/rehabilitation; Physical therapy modalities; Child; hospitalized

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