Title: Awareness of breathing: The structure of language descriptors of respiratory sensations
Authors: Petersen, Sibylle ×
Orth, Bernhard
Ritz, Thomas #
Issue Date: Jan-2008
Publisher: Amer psychological assoc
Series Title: Health Psychology vol:27 issue:1 pages:122-127
Abstract: Objective: Recent research suggests that dyspnea is not a single sensation but a multidimensional construct reflected in different verbal descriptors that can provide useful diagnostic information. In this study superordinated clusters of dyspnea were investigated in combination with a dimensional approach. Design: We examined the use of 20 respiratory symptom descriptors by healthy volunteers who completed a protocol of seven experimental conditions: Quiet breathing, breath holding, paced breathing, climbing stairs, resistive load breathing, voluntary hyperinflation, and voluntary hyperventilation. Main Outcome Measures: We analyzed the ratings of these descriptors with multidimensional scaling (MDS) and cluster analysis. Results and Conclusion: While similarities with prior studies were found on a lower fusion level, we were able to demonstrate the usefulness of interpreting higher fusion levels with four clusters related to work of breathing, coordination, suffocation, and struggling for air, merging into two superordinated clusters, effort and air hunger that are compatible with widely accepted primary components of dyspnea. MDS results also suggested that future studies should consider further breathing sensations related to cognitive control of breathing.
ISSN: 0278-6133
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Health Psychology
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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