Little is known about whether there is any sex effect on chronic obstructive lung disease (COPD) exacerbations. This study is intended to describe the possible sex-associated differences in exacerbation profile in COPD patients.
A total of 384 COPD patients who were hospitalized due to exacerbation were evaluated retrospectively for their demographics and previous and current exacerbation characteristics.
The study was conducted on 109 (28%) female patients and 275 (72%) male patients. The mean age was 68.30±10.46 years. Although females had better forced expiratory volume in 1 second and near-normal forced vital capacity, they had much impaired arterial blood gas levels (partial oxygen pressure [PO 2] was 36.28 mmHg vs 57.93 mmHg; partial carbon dioxide pressure [PCO 2] was 45.97 mmHg vs 42.49 mmHg; P=0.001), indicating severe exacerbation with respiratory failure. More females had two exacerbations and two hospitalizations, while more men had one exacerbation and one hospitalization. Low adherence to treatment and pulmonary embolism were more frequent in females. Females had longer time from the onset of symptoms till the admission and longer hospitalization duration than males. Comorbidities were less in number and different in women ( P<0.05). Women were undertreated and using more oral corticosteroids.