Table 3:

Studies comparing physiotherapy techniques in stable bronchiectasis

Study design (year)PatientsInterventionOutcome
Crossover study (1999) (44)191 session ACBT with head-down tilt v. 1 session withoutNo difference in sputum weight, spirometry
Randomized crossover study (2002) (45)174 wk of ACBT v. 4 wk of Flutter*No difference in sputum weight, dyspnea score, spirometry
Randomized prospective study (2007) (46)30Flutter* v. ACBT v. ACBT and postural drainage, all assessed over 1 wkGreater sputum weight with ACBT and postural drainage
Randomized crossover study (2016) (47)313 nonconsecutive sessions over 7 d of autogenic drainage v. slow expiration with glottis open in lateral position v. temporary positive expiratory pressureNo difference in sputum expectoration during 24-h posttreatment period; cough severity score improved for all groups
Randomized trial (2013) (48)30Twice-daily sessions administered 5 d/wk for 15 d of traditional chest physiotherapy (various techniques) v. high-frequency chest wall oscillation (using the Vest Airway Clearance System) v. no physiotherapyBoth treatment groups were superior to no physiotherapy for dyspnea scores, lung function and sputum production; high-frequency chest wall oscillation
  • Note: ACBT = active cycle of breathing technique.

  • * The Flutter is an oscillating positive expiratory pressure device. (44) (46)