Machine to clean air for asthmatics

British researchers who tested the drug-free bedside air filter reported that it significantly reduced patients’ symptoms such as wheezing and tight chests.

According to them, the laminar airflow treatment, called Protexo, filters out airborne triggers such as dust particles and mites, pet hairs and powders that cause irritation and inflammation of the lungs, the Daily Telegraph reported.

The results of the temperature-controlled machine, made by Swedish firm Airsonett, were equivalent to those made by expensive drugs and could also lead to less time in hospital, the researchers said.

“This device makes a significant difference to people’s lives, with an effect as big as very expensive treatments, and it helps prevent the triggers of the disease,” lead researcher John Warner, a professor of paediatrics at Imperial College London, said.

“Our findings support the importance of focusing exposure control interventions on the breathing zone, and highlight the role of nocturnal exposures in precipitating airway inflammation and symptoms in patients with atopic asthma.”

The European study of patients, aged seven to 70, found those who used the device recorded 15 per cent better quality of life scores after a year than those given a dummy machine.

Protexo protects the breathing area of people with asthma from allergenic agents with the help of a flow of slightly cooled air around them at night.

The researchers, whose findings are published online in the journal Thorax, said Protexo worked by displacing warmer air containing irritants and allergens such as house dust mite and pet hairs with the slightly colder air.

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