Extra Pulmonary Symptoms

While COPD primarily affects the lungs, factors such as breathlessness, fatigue, muscle wasting, sleep and mood disturbances, and frequent exacerbations also impact on patients’ daily life, health, and wellbeing. Assessments of health-related quality of life using validated instruments (e.g., the St George’s Respiratory Questionnaire [SGRQ]) show significant associations between health status and a wide range of specific markers of impaired health.21 A recent meta-analysis of studies of bronchodilators also showed that there was a significant correlation between increases in forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1) and improvements in health status (SGRQ score).22

Patients with COPD are at increased risk for a number of comorbid conditions as a result of the stress placed on their respiratory and circulatory systems by the disease.


  • Symptoms References

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