Abstract The possibility that a subject’s psychological status may infl uence respiratory sensations and that chronic respiratory disease may have psychological consequences has sparked great interest among clinicians and researchers. This paper reviews the existing research on the association between respiratory symptom perception and the psychological status and between chronic respiratory diseases, such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and psychological disturbances. Moreover, it focuses on the role of stressful events in determining asthma exacerbations. The recent literature suggests that in patients with chronic respiratory diseases, the evaluation of breathlessness perception, psychological disturbances and the recording of any stressful events should be considered as relevant as the physical and functional assessment of respiration.
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