, Volume 155, Issue 1, pp 309–320 | Cite as

Respiratory responses to one year of daily use of a cosmetic hair spray

  • Burton M. Cohen


Although 30 healthy subjects had no mean adverse function effects from a single hair-spray exposure, a decrease in FEF75% and an increase in the slope of the alveolar plateau appeared to differentiate smokers from nonsmokers. These individuals continued to use the same aerosol for 20 s daily during the next year. Lung and forced expiratory volumes, derivatives of MEFV curves, closing volume information and the phase III slope, determined every 3 months, furnished 20 serial indices.

The 28 patients completing the study reported no unwelcome effects. Although there were significant (P = 0.05) rises in FVC, PEFR, FEF25% and FEF75% after 1 year, other changes suggestive of bronchodilatation on acute testing did not persist. Closing volume data did not change. The only consistent trend with time was a fall in the phase III slope from an unexplained high baseline mean, suggesting a major learning effect for this maneuver. Continued aerosol use obliterated the original differences noted between the responses of smokers and nonsmokers.

The absence of depression of terminal flow rates or measurable adverse changes in other standard small airways tests suggests that chronic consumer use of this hair spray does not lead to demonstrable functional respiratory impairment in this group of originally healthy individuals.

Key words

Hair spray Spirometry MEFV curves Closing volume Alveolar plateau Small airways 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • Burton M. Cohen
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.The Elizabeth General Hospital and DispensaryElizabeth
  2. 2.New Jersey College of Medicine and DentistryNewarkUSA

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