Bronchial asthma has been described by the early writers as a form of asthma in which there occurs spasm of the bronchus and swelling of the bronchial mucous membrane. These statements were based on clinical deductions and supported by meager data obtained at autopsy. As a result, numerous theories were expounded to explain the clinical manifestations and, as is often the case, many of these, although not founded on fact, still influence the teachings of the present day.
With the advent of bronchoscopy in the field of diagnosis, it became possible to make direct observations on the appearances, movements and secretions of the trachea and bronchi in the living.
In 1907, Nowotny1 bronchoscopically observed a case of bronchial asthma and made direct applications to the bronchial mucosa through the bronchoscope with favorable results. Since that observation many patients have been bronchoscopically examined by numerous observers. Various observations have been
CLERF LH. BRONCHOSCOPY AS AN AID IN DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT OF BRONCHIAL ASTHMA. JAMA. 1927;89(11):872–875. doi:10.1001/jama.1927.02690110036013
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