Int J Sports Med 2010; 31(4): 231-236
DOI: 10.1055/s-0030-1247592
Physiology & Biochemistry

© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Comparative Effects of Caffeine and Albuterol on the Bronchoconstrictor Response to Exercise in Asthmatic Athletes

T. A. VanHaitsma1 , T. Mickleborough2 , J. M. Stager2 , D. M. Koceja2 , M. R. Lindley3 , R. Chapman2
  • 1University of Utah, Exercise and Sports Science, Salt Lake City, United States
  • 2Indiana University, Kinesiology, Blooomington, United States
  • 3Loughborough University, Sport, Exercise and Health Science, Loughborough, United Kingdom
Further Information

Publication History

accepted after revision December 30, 2009

Publication Date:
10 February 2010 (online)

Abstract

The main aim of this study was to evaluate the comparative and additive effects of caffeine and albuterol (short-acting β2-agonist) on the severity of EIB. Ten asthmatic subjects with EIB (exercise-induced bronchoconstriction) participated in a randomized, double-blind, double-dummy crossover study. One hour before an exercise challenge, each subject was given 0, 3, 6, or 9 mg/kg of caffeine or placebo mixed in a flavored sugar drink. Fifteen minutes before the exercise bout, an inhaler containing either albuterol (180 μg) or placebo was administered to each subject. Pulmonary function tests were conducted pre- and post-exercise. Caffeine at a dose of 6 and 9 mg/kg significantly reduced (p<0.05) the mean maximum % fall in post-exercise FEV1 to −9.0±9.2% and −6.8±6.5% respectively compared to the double-placebo (−14.3±11.1%) and baseline (−18.4±7.2%). There was no significant difference (p>0.05) in the post-exercise % fall in FEV1 between albuterol (plus caffeine placebo) (−4.0±5.2%) and the 9 mg/kg dose of caffeine (−6.8±6.5%). Interestingly, there was no significant difference (p>0.05) in the post-exercise % fall in FEV1 between albuterol (plus caffeine placebo) (−4.0±5.2%) and albuterol with 3, 6 or 9 mg/kg of caffeine (−4.4±3.8, −6.8±5.6, −4.4±6.0% respectively). Similar changes were observed for the post-exercise % fall in FVC, FEF25–75% and PEF. These data indicate that moderate (6 mg/kg) to high doses (9 mg/kg) of caffeine provide a significant protective effect against EIB. It is feasible that the negative effects of daily use of short-acting β2-agonists by asthmatic athletes could be reduced simply by increasing caffeine consumption prior to exercise.

References

Correspondence

Dr. Timothy Mickleborough

Indiana University Kinesiology

1025 E. 7th St, HPER 112

47405 Blooomington

United States

Phone: 812-855-0753

Fax: 812-855-3193

Email: tmickleb@indiana.edu

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