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      Impact of acute exacerbations on platelet reactivity in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patients

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          A higher risk of atherothrombotic cardiovascular events, which are platelet-driven processes, has been described during acute exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (AECOPD). However, the relevance of platelet reactivity during AECOPD and whether this is affected by antiplatelet agents are not fully elucidated to date. This study aimed to evaluate whether platelet reactivity is augmented during an exacerbation in COPD patients with and without antiplatelet therapy and its association with systemic inflammatory parameters.

          Materials and methods

          Prospective, observational, ex vivo investigation was conducted in consecutive patients suffering an exacerbation of COPD. Platelet reactivity was assessed during AECOPD and at stable state. Platelet function assays included: 1) vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein assay expressed as P2Y 12 reactivity index (PRI), 2) multiple electrode aggregometry and 3) optical aggregometry. Systemic inflammatory parameters such as leukocyte count, interleukin-6 and fibrinogen were also assessed.


          Higher platelet reactivity was observed during AECOPD compared to stability measured by vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein (PRI: 75.2%±1.9% vs 68.8%±2.4%, p=0.001). This augmented platelet aggregability was also observed in the subset of patients on antiplatelet therapy (PRI: 72.8%±3.1% vs 61.7%±7.5%, p=0.071). Consistent findings were observed with all other platelet function tests. Patients with greater enhancement of inflammatory markers during AECOPD were more likely to present a higher increase in platelet reactivity.


          Platelet reactivity is increased during AECOPD, which may contribute to the augmented cardiovascular risk of these patients. Additionally, the increase in platelet reactivity might be associated with an increment in inflammatory markers during exacerbations.

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          Most cited references 21

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          Platelet activation and atherothrombosis.

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            Mortality in COPD: Role of comorbidities.

            Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) represents an increasing burden throughout the world. COPD-related mortality is probably underestimated because of the difficulties associated with identifying the precise cause of death. Respiratory failure is considered the major cause of death in advanced COPD. Comorbidities such as cardiovascular disease and lung cancer are also major causes and, in mild-to-moderate COPD, are the leading causes of mortality. The links between COPD and these conditions are not fully understood. However, a link through the inflammation pathway has been suggested, as persistent low-grade pulmonary and systemic inflammation, both known risk factors for cardiovascular disease and cancer, are present in COPD independent of cigarette smoking. Lung-specific measurements, such as forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV(1)), predict mortality in COPD and in the general population. However, composite tools, such as health-status measurements (e.g. St George's Respiratory Questionnaire) and the BODE index, which incorporates Body mass index, lung function (airflow Obstruction), Dyspnoea and Exercise capacity, predict mortality better than FEV(1) alone. These multidimensional tools may be more valuable because, unlike predictive approaches based on single parameters, they can reflect the range of comorbidities and the complexity of underlying mechanisms associated with COPD. The current paper reviews the role of comorbidities in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease mortality, the putative underlying pathogenic link between chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and comorbid conditions (i.e. inflammation), and the tools used to predict chronic obstructive pulmonary disease mortality.
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              Impaired lung function and mortality risk in men and women: findings from the Renfrew and Paisley prospective population study.

              To assess the relation between forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) and subsequent mortality. Prospective general population study. Renfrew and Paisley, Scotland. 7058 men and 8353 women aged 45-64 years at baseline screening in 1972-6. Mortality from all causes, ischaemic heart disease, cancer, hung and other cancers, stroke, respiratory disease, and other causes of death after 15 years of follow up. 2545 men and 1894 women died during the follow up period. Significant trends of increasing risk with diminishing FEV1 are apparent for both sexes for all the causes of death examined after adjustment for age, cigarette smoking, diastolic blood pressure, cholesterol concentration, body mass index, and social class. The relative hazard ratios for all cause mortality for subjects in the lowest fifth of the FEV1 distribution were 1.92 (95% confidence interval 1.68 to 2.20) for men and 1.89 (1.63 to 2.20) for women. Corresponding relative hazard ratios were 1.56 (1.26 to 1.92) and 1.88 (1.44 to 2.47) for ischaemic heart disease, 2.53 (1.69 to 3.79) and 4.37 (1.84 to 10.42) for lung cancer, and 1.66 (1.07 to 2.59) and 1.65 (1.09 to 2.49) for stroke. Reduced FEV1 was also associated with an increased risk for each cause of death examined except cancer for lifelong nonsmokers. Impaired lung function is a major clinical indicator of mortality risk in men and women for a wide range of diseases. The use of FEV1 as part of any health assessment of middle aged patients should be considered. Smokers with reduced FEV1 should form a priority group for targeted advice to stop smoking.

                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
                28 December 2017
                : 13
                : 141-148
                [1 ]Department of Pulmonary Medicine, Bellvitge University Hospital, IDIBELL, University of Barcelona, L’Hospitalet de Llobregat
                [2 ]Heart Diseases Institute, Bellvitge University Hospital, IDIBELL, University of Barcelona, L’Hospitalet de Llobregat
                [3 ]Biomedical Research Networking Centre Consortium Respiratory Diseases, CIBERES, Barcelona, Spain
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Mariana Muñoz-Esquerre, Department of Pulmonary Medicine, Bellvitge University Hospital – IDIBELL, University of Barcelona, C/Feixa Llarga s/n. CP 08907, L’Hospitalet de Llobregat, Barcelona, Spain, Tel +34 93 260 7685, Fax +34 93 260 7639, Email mmunoze@
                © 2018 Muñoz-Esquerre et al. This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited

                The full terms of this license are available at and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution – Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License ( By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed.

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