Breathing Study Open for Dallas Area Seniors

Researchers will look into how body weight, even extra weight gain like the kind recently resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, may adversely affect breathing in seniors.

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More Americans weighed in as obese during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic than in the previous year.

Americans who participated in a study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, reported more frequent snacking and alcohol intake; increased eating in response to sight, smell, and stress; and decreased physical activity as reasons for weight gain.

As many people gained weight, their bodies — from youth to seniors — may be having to work that much harder to breathe properly.

The breathing study hopes to recruit 65 to 75-year-old nonsmokers without asthma, diabetes, heart or lung disease who are mild-to-moderately obese.

In addition to participants in the study being compensated for their time, they will receive study-related assessments and testing at no cost, including body composition, pulmonary function and exercise capacity.

“If you are overweight or gained weight during the COVID-19 pandemic, the time to find out how this may have affected your breathing is now especially if you are a senior,” said Dr. Tony Babb, Professor of Internal Medicine at UT Southwestern and Director of Cardiopulmonary Laboratory, IEEM.

Located on the campus of Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas, the IEEM is a joint program between Texas Health Dallas and UT Southwestern Medical Center.


  • The non-invasive study examines the respiratory function and exercise tolerance in adult seniors, ages 65-75, who may be struggling with extra pounds as compared with seniors who have normal body weight.
  • Seniors will be selected for the study if they are nonsmokers and nondiabetic and have never been diagnosed with asthma, heart or lung disease.


  • Participants will be men and women, ages 65-75, with an emphasis on those who struggle with extra weight.

How to Join

  • Those who want to enroll in the study may call 214-345-6574.
  • Participants will be compensated for their time and receive body composition, pulmonary function and exercise capacity test results.
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