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      Respiratory infectious phenotypes in acute exacerbation of COPD: an aid to length of stay and COPD Assessment Test

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          To investigate the respiratory infectious phenotypes and their impact on length of stay (LOS) and the COPD Assessment Test (CAT) Scale in acute exacerbation of COPD (AECOPD).

          Patients and methods

          We categorized 81 eligible patients into bacterial infection, viral infection, coinfection, and non-infectious groups. The respiratory virus examination was determined by a liquid bead array xTAG Respiratory Virus Panel in pharyngeal swabs, while bacterial infection was studied by conventional sputum culture. LOS and CAT as well as demographic information were recorded.


          Viruses were detected in 38 subjects, bacteria in 17, and of these, seven had both. Influenza virus was the most frequently isolated virus, followed by enterovirus/rhinovirus, coronavirus, bocavirus, metapneumovirus, parainfluenza virus types 1, 2, 3, and 4, and respiratory syncytial virus. Bacteriologic analyses of sputum showed that Pseudomonas aeruginosa was the most common bacteria, followed by Acinetobacter baumannii, Klebsiella, Escherichia coli, and Streptococcus pneumoniae. The longest LOS and the highest CAT score were detected in coinfection group. CAT score was positively correlated with LOS.


          Respiratory infection is a common causative agent of exacerbations in COPD. Respiratory coinfection is likely to be a determinant of more severe acute exacerbations with longer LOS. CAT score may be a predictor of longer LOS in AECOPD.

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          Most cited references 20

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          Respiratory viruses, symptoms, and inflammatory markers in acute exacerbations and stable chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

          The effects of respiratory viral infection on the time course of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) exacerbation were examined by monitoring changes in systemic inflammatory markers in stable COPD and at exacerbation. Eighty-three patients with COPD (mean [SD] age, 66.6 [7.1] yr, FEV(1), 1.06 [0.61] L) recorded daily peak expiratory flow rate and any increases in respiratory symptoms. Nasal samples and blood were taken for respiratory virus detection by culture, polymerase chain reaction, and serology, and plasma fibrinogen and serum interleukin-6 (IL-6) were determined at stable baseline and exacerbation. Sixty-four percent of exacerbations were associated with a cold occurring up to 18 d before exacerbation. Seventy-seven viruses (39 [58.2%] rhinoviruses) were detected in 66 (39.2%) of 168 COPD exacerbations in 53 (64%) patients. Viral exacerbations were associated with frequent exacerbators, colds with increased dyspnea, a higher total symptom count at presentation, a longer median symptom recovery period of 13 d, and a tendency toward higher plasma fibrinogen and serum IL-6 levels. Non-respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) respiratory viruses were detected in 11 (16%), and RSV in 16 (23.5%), of 68 stable COPD patients, with RSV detection associated with higher inflammatory marker levels. Respiratory virus infections are associated with more severe and frequent exacerbations, and may cause chronic infection in COPD. Prevention and early treatment of viral infections may lead to a decreased exacerbation frequency and morbidity associated with COPD.
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            Effect of Interactions Between Lower Airway Bacterial and Rhinoviral Infection in Exacerbations of COPD

            Study objectives The inflammatory responses and associated clinical severity of COPD exacerbations are greatly variable, and the determinants of these factors are poorly understood. We examined the hypothesis that bacteria and viruses may modulate this heterogeneity and that interactions between bacterial and viral infection may affect changes in airway bacterial load and the clinical features and inflammatory responses of exacerbations in patients with COPD. Design Prospective cohort study. Setting Outpatient Department, London Chest Hospital, London, UK. Patients Thirty-nine patients with COPD. Measurements We prospectively studied 56 COPD exacerbations, obtaining clinical data and paired sputum and serum samples at baseline and exacerbation. Qualitative and quantitative microbiology, polymerase chain reaction detection for rhinovirus, and estimation of cytokine levels by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay were performed. Results A total of 69.6% of exacerbations were associated with a bacterial pathogen, most commonly Haemophilus influenzae. Rhinovirus was identified in 19.6% of exacerbations. The rise in bacterial load at exacerbation correlated with the rise in sputum interleukin (IL)-8 (r = 0.37, p = 0.022) and fall in FEV1 (r = 0.35, p = 0.048). Exacerbations with both rhinovirus and H influenzae had higher bacterial loads (108.56 cfu/mL vs 108.05cfu/mL, p = 0.018) and serum IL-6 (13.75 pg/mL vs 6.29 pg/mL, p = 0.028) than exacerbations without both pathogens. In exacerbations with both cold symptoms (a marker of putative viral infection) and a bacterial pathogen, the FEV1 fall was greater (20.3% vs 3.6%, p = 0.026) and symptom count was higher (p = 0.019) than those with a bacterial pathogen alone. Conclusions The clinical severity and inflammatory responses in COPD exacerbations are modulated by the nature of the infecting organism: bacterial and viral pathogens interact to cause additional rises in inflammatory markers and greater exacerbation severity.
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              Prevalence of viral infection detected by PCR and RT‐PCR in patients with acute exacerbation of COPD: A systematic review

              ABSTRACT Background and objective:  Viruses are important aetiological agents of acute exacerbation of COPD (AECOPD). Their reported prevalence varies from region to region. This systematic review calculated the prevalence of respiratory viral infections in AECOPD. Methods:  A systematic search was performed using Medline, and references of relevant articles and conference proceedings were hand searched. Articles for review were selected based on the following criteria: (i) prospective or cross‐sectional study, (ii) original research, (iii) viral detection used the highly sensitive techniques of PCR and/or Reverse Transcriptase PCR (RT‐PCR), (iv) viral prevalence in AECOPD defined, and (v) full paper available in English. We assessed the study quality and extracted data independently and in duplicate using a pre‐defined data extraction form. Weighted mean prevalence (WMP) was calculated and a forest plot was constructed to show the dispersion. Results:  Eight studies met the inclusion criteria. The WMP of respiratory viral infection in AECOPD was 34.1% (95% CI: 23.9–44.4). picornavirus was the most commonly detected virus with WMP 17.3% (95% CI: 7.2–27.3), followed by influenza; 7.4% (95% CI: 2.9–12.0), respiratory syncytial virus; 5.3% (95% CI: 1.6–9.0), corona viruses; 3.1% (95% CI: 0.4–5.8), parainfluenza; 2.6% (95% CI: 0.4–4.8), adenovirus; 1.1% (95% CI: −1.1 to 3.3), and human metapneumovirus; 0.7% (95% CI: −0.3 to 1.8). Maximum WMP was observed in studies from Europe followed by the USA, Australia and Asia. Picorna was the most common virus detected in Western countries whereas influenza was most common in Asia. Conclusions:  This systematic review demonstrated that viruses are strongly associated with AECOPD, with the highest detection rates of viruses being in Europe. The geographical epidemiology of viruses may have important therapeutic implications for management of AECOPD.

                Author and article information

                Int J Chron Obstruct Pulmon Dis
                Int J Chron Obstruct Pulmon Dis
                International Journal of COPD
                International Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
                Dove Medical Press
                20 October 2015
                : 10
                : 2257-2263
                [1 ]Pulmonary Department, First Affiliated Hospital of Anhui Medical University, Hefei, Anhui, People’s Republic of China
                [2 ]Department of Clinical Laboratory, First Affiliated Hospital of Anhui Medical University, Hefei, Anhui, People’s Republic of China
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Guang-He Fei, Pulmonary Department, First Affiliated Hospital of Anhui Medical University, Hefei 230022, Anhui, People’s Republic of China, Tel +86 551 6292 2013, Fax +86 551 6363 5578, Email guanghefei@
                © 2015 Dai et al. This work is published by Dove Medical Press Limited, and licensed under Creative Commons Attribution – Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License

                The full terms of the License are available at Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed.

                Original Research

                Respiratory medicine

                cat, acute exacerbation, respiratory infectious, phenotypes, los, copd


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