Heart Failure More Prevalent in COPD Patients

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Heart Failure More Prevalent in COPD Patients
Heart Failure More Prevalent in COPD Patients

(HealthDay News) — Compared with the general population, patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) have a greater prevalence of heart failure, according to research presented at the annual meeting of the American Thoracic Society, held from May 16–21 in San Diego.

Srinadh Annangi, MBBS, of the Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, and colleagues retrospectively analyzed hospital discharge data for the period 2001–2010 to examine the frequency and impact of heart failure in patients with COPD who were ≥40 years of age.

The researchers found that, compared with the background population, patients with COPD had a higher prevalence of heart failure (27.3 vs. 15.3%; P<0.0001). When stratified by race, the prevalence of heart failure in patients with COPD vs. those in the background population was 33.1 vs, 17.1% for African-Americans, 27.4 vs. 14.8% for those with unreported race, and 26.8 vs. 15.3% for European-Americans (all P<0.0001). Patients with COPD and heart failure, compared with those with COPD alone, had longer average length of hospital stay (6.4 vs. 5.6 days), greater in-hospital mortality (5.6 vs. 3.6%), and a higher rate of discharge to long-term care facilities (21.2 vs. 15.7%) (all P<0.0001).

"The co-existence of COPD and heart failure, which share common symptoms, may pose diagnostic and therapeutic challenges. The long-term effect of both diagnoses over time remains to be determined," a coauthor said in a statement. "As the prevalence of COPD gains traction in individuals of low socioeconomic status, the impact of simultaneous comorbid diagnoses over decades of life could pose substantial fiscal, therapeutic, and social challenges."

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