Challenges in Collating Spirometry Reference Data for South-Asian Children: An Observational Study.
Sunil K Chhabra
Rajesh K Chudasama
Derek G Cook
Claudia E Kuehni
K V V Prasad
Peter H Whincup
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AbstractSpirometry datasets from South-Asian children were collated from four centres in India and five within the UK. Records with transcription errors, missing values for height or spirometry, and implausible values were excluded(n = 110).Following exclusions, cross-sectional data were available from 8,124 children (56.3% male; 5-17 years). When compared with GLI-predicted values from White Europeans, forced expired volume in 1s (FEV1) and forced vital capacity (FVC) in South-Asian children were on average 15% lower, ranging from 4-19% between centres. By contrast, proportional reductions in FEV1 and FVC within all but two datasets meant that the FEV1/FVC ratio remained independent of ethnicity. The 'GLI-Other' equation fitted data from North India reasonably well while 'GLI-Black' equations provided a better approximation for South-Asian data than the 'GLI-White' equation. However, marked discrepancies in the mean lung function z-scores between centres especially when examined according to socio-economic conditions precluded derivation of a single South-Asian GLI-adjustment.Until improved and more robust prediction equations can be derived, we recommend the use of 'GLI-Black' equations for interpreting most South-Asian data, although 'GLI-Other' may be more appropriate for North Indian data. Prospective data collection using standardised protocols to explore potential sources of variation due to socio-economic circumstances, secular changes in growth/predictors of lung function and ethnicities within the South-Asian classification are urgently required.