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Characterization of Lung Function Impairment in Adults
with Bronchiectasis

Wei-jie Guan, Yong-hua Gao, Gang Xu, Zhi-ya Lin, Yan Tang, Hui-min Li, Zhi-min Lin,
Jin-ping Zheng, Rong-chang Chen, Nan-shan Zhong

Abstract

Background: Characteristics of lung function impairment in bronchiectasis is not fully understood.
Objectives: To determine the factors associated with lung function impairment and to compare changes in spirometry during bronchiectasis exacerbation and convalescence (1 week following 14-day antibiotic therapy).
Methods: We recruited 142 patients with steady-state bronchiectasis, of whom 44 with acute exacerbations in the follow-up were included in subgroup analyses. Baseline measurements consisted of chest high-resolution computed tomography (HRCT), sputum volume, purulence and bacteriology, spirometry and diffusing capacity. Spirometry, but not diffusing capacity, was examined during acute exacerbations and convalescence.
Results: In the final multivariate models, having bronchiectasis symptoms for 10 years or greater (OR = 4.75, 95%CI: 1.46–15.43, P = 0.01), sputum culture positive for Pseudomonas aeruginosa (OR = 4.93, 95%CI: 1.52–15.94, P,0.01) and HRCT total score being 12 or greater (OR = 7.77, 95%CI: 3.21–18.79, P,0.01) were the major variables associated with FEV1 being
50%pred or less; and the only variable associated with reduced DLCO was 4 or more bronchiectatic lobes (OR = 5.91, 95%CI: 2.20–17.23, P,0.01). Overall differences in FVC and FEV1 during exacerbations and convalescence were significant (P,0.05), whereas changes in other spirometric parameters were less notable. This applied even when stratified by the magnitude of FEV1 and DLCO reduction at baseline.
Conclusion: Significant lung function impairment should raise alert of chest HRCT abnormality and sputum culture positive for Pseudomonas aeruginosa, in patients with predominantly mild to moderate steady-state bronchiectasis. Acute exacerbations elicited reductions in FVC and FEV1. Changes of other spirometric parameters were less significant during exacerbations.
Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01761214

Characterization of Lung Function Impairment in Adults with Bronchiectasis.pdf

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