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International Journal of Rheumatology
Volume 2014, Article ID 594708, 6 pages
Research Article

Effects of Glossopharyngeal Insufflation in Ankylosing Spondylitis: A Pilot Study

1Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and Society, Division of Physiotherapy, Karolinska Institutet, B3, Huddinge, 14183 Stockholm, Sweden
2Department of Orthopaedics, Division of Physiotherapy, Danderyd Hospital, 182 88 Stockholm, Sweden
3Department of Radiology, Karolinska University Hospital, 171 76 Stockholm, Sweden
4Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Karolinska Institutet, 171 77 Stockholm, Sweden
5Department of Physical Therapy, Karolinska University Hospital, 141 86 Stockholm, Sweden

Received 13 August 2014; Revised 12 November 2014; Accepted 12 November 2014; Published 23 November 2014

Academic Editor: Ruben Burgos-Vargas

Copyright © 2014 Nina Brodin et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS), thoracic range of motion is often greatly limited. The objective of the study was to describe the effects of 12 weeks of Glossopharyngeal Insufflation (GI) training in patients with AS. Dynamic spirometry included vital capacity, forced expiratory volume, and peak expiratory flow. Thoracic and lumbar range of motion was assessed by tragus-to-wall distance, modified Schober test, and tape measure. Disease activity, activity limitation, and health perception were assessed using the BAS-Indices, and tension in the thoracic region during GI was assessed using the Borg CR-10 scale. Adherence to training was recorded in an activity log, along with any remarks on the training. Ten patients were recruited and six male patients fulfilled the study protocol. Three patients were able to learn GI by exceeding their maximal vital capacity with 5% using GI. A significant increase in thoracic range of motion both on costae IV and at the level of the xiphoid process was seen. Thus, patients with AS can practice GI, it is safe if maximal exertion is avoided, and patients with some mobility in the chest can increase their lung function substantially by performing GI during 12 weeks.