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Editorials |

Disability in Patients With COPDDisability in COPD

Abebaw M. Yohannes, PhD, FCCP
Author and Funding Information

From the Department of Health Professions, Research Institute for Health and Social Care, Manchester Metropolitan University.

Correspondence to: Abebaw M. Yohannes, PhD, FCCP, Department of Health Professions, Manchester Metropolitan University, Hathersage Road, Manchester, England, M13 0JA; e-mail: A.yohannes@mmu.ac.uk


Financial/nonfinancial disclosures: The authors have reported to CHEST that no potential conflicts of interest exist with any companies/organizations whose products or services may be discussed in this article.

Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians. See online for more details.


Chest. 2014;145(2):200-202. doi:10.1378/chest.13-1703
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Extract

COPD is a major cause of physical disability and impaired quality of life in older people.1 Over the past 2 decades, despite medical advances in the management of COPD, the incidence of COPD-related death has risen exponentially compared with a decline in other chronic diseases (such as cardiovascular diseases).2 Patients with moderate to severe COPD experience excessive dyspnea on exertion disproportionate to activity, reduced exercise tolerance, frequent acute exacerbations, and recurrent hospitalizations.3-5 Progressive decline in physical activity has been associated with reduced social interaction, elevated mortality, and frequency of hospital admission.3,5 Although the factors related to the progressive decline in physical activity in patients with COPD are unclear, the causes are most likely multifactorial, including psychologic, behavioral, and social aspects, which all play an important role in physical activity. In view of the debilitative and unpredictable nature of the course of COPD, it is difficult for physicians to quantify the magnitude of the physical limitations of their patients’ daily activities. Therefore, it is critical to develop well-validated scales to determine the impact of COPD on those activities.

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