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      Increased risk of community-acquired pneumonia in COPD patients with comorbid cardiovascular disease

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          Background and objective

          COPD patients with community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) have worse clinical outcomes, as compared to those without COPD. Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a common comorbidity for COPD patients. Whether COPD with comorbid CVD will increase the risk of CAP is not well investigated. The incidence and factors associated with CAP in COPD patients with and without CVD were analyzed.


          The medical records of patients with newly diagnosed COPD between 2007 and 2010 were reviewed. The patients’ characteristics, medical history of CVD, occurrence of CAP, and type of medication were recorded. Kaplan–Meier curves were used to assess the differences in cumulative incidence of CAP. Cox’s proportional hazards regression model was used to determine the adjusted hazard ratios with 95% confidence intervals in relation to factors associated with CAP in COPD patients with and without CVD.


          Among 2,440 patients, 475 patients (19.5%) developed CAP during the follow-up period. COPD patients who developed CAP were significantly older, had lower forced expiratory volume in 1 second, frequent severe exacerbation and comorbid CVD, as well as received inhaled corticosteroid (ICS)-containing therapy than those without CAP. The cumulative incidence of CAP was higher in COPD patients with CVD compared to those without CVD. Patients who received ICS-containing therapy had significantly increased risk of developing CAP compared to those who did not.


          For patients with COPD, comorbid CVD is an independent risk factor for developing CAP. ICS-containing therapy may increase the risk of CAP among COPD patients.

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          Most cited references 32

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          Hospitalized community-acquired pneumonia in the elderly: age- and sex-related patterns of care and outcome in the United States.

          Community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) is a frequent cause of hospital admission and death among elderly patients, but there is little information on age- and sex-specific incidence, patterns of care (intensive care unit admission and mechanical ventilation), resource use (length of stay and hospital costs), and outcome (mortality). We conducted an observational cohort study of all Medicare recipients, aged 65 years or older, hospitalized in nonfederal U.S. hospitals in 1997, who met ICD-9-CM-based criteria for CAP. We identified 623,718 hospital admissions for CAP (18.3 per 1,000 population > or = 65 years), of which 26,476 (4.3%) were from nursing homes and of which 66,045 (10.6%) died. The incidence rose five-fold and mortality doubled as age increased from 65-69 to older than 90 years. Men had a higher mortality, both unadjusted (odds ratio [OR]: 1.21 [95% CI: 1.19-1.23]) and adjusted for age, location before admission, underlying comorbidity, and microbiologic etiology (OR: 1.15 [95% CI: 1.13-1.17]). Mean hospital length of stay and costs per hospital admission were 7.6 days and $6,949. For those admitted to the intensive care unit (22.4%) and for those receiving mechanical ventilation (7.2%), mean length of stay and costs were 11.3 days and $14,294, and 15.7 days and $23,961, respectively. Overall hospital costs were $4.4 billion (6.3% of the expenditure in the elderly for acute hospital care), of which $2.1 billion was incurred by cases managed in intensive care units. We conclude that in the hospitalized elderly, CAP is a common and frequently fatal disease that often requires intensive care unit admission and mechanical ventilation and consumes considerable health care resources. The sex differences are of concern and require further investigation.
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            Pneumonia risk in COPD patients receiving inhaled corticosteroids alone or in combination: TORCH study results.

            Inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) are important in reducing exacerbation frequency associated with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). However, little is known about the risk of associated infections. In a post hoc analysis of the TOwards a Revolution in COPD Health (TORCH) study, we analysed and identified potential risk factors for adverse event reports of pneumonia in this randomised, double-blind trial comparing twice-daily inhaled salmeterol (SAL) 50 microg, fluticasone propionate (FP) 500 microg, and the combination (SFC) with placebo in 6,184 patients with moderate-to-severe COPD over 3 yrs. Despite a higher withdrawal rate in the placebo arm, after adjusting for time on treatment, a greater rate of pneumonia was reported in the FP and SFC treatment arms (84 and 88 per 1,000 treatment-yrs, respectively) compared with SAL and placebo (52 and 52 per 1,000 treatment-yrs, respectively). Risk factors for pneumonia were age > or =55 yrs, forced expiratory volume in 1 s <50% predicted, COPD exacerbations in the year prior to the study, worse Medical Research Council dyspnoea scores and body mass index <25 kg.m(-2). No increase in pneumonia deaths with SFC was observed; this could not be concluded for FP. Despite the benefits of ICS-containing regimens in COPD management, healthcare providers should remain vigilant regarding the possible development of pneumonia as a complication in COPD patients receiving such therapies.
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              Cardiac complications in patients with community-acquired pneumonia: incidence, timing, risk factors, and association with short-term mortality.

              Community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) affects >5 million adults each year in the United States. Although incident cardiac complications occur in patients with community-acquired pneumonia, their incidence, timing, risk factors, and associations with short-term mortality are not well understood. A total of 1343 inpatients and 944 outpatients with community-acquired pneumonia were followed up prospectively for 30 days after presentation. Incident cardiac complications (new or worsening heart failure, new or worsening arrhythmias, or myocardial infarction) were diagnosed in 358 inpatients (26.7%) and 20 outpatients (2.1%). Although most events (89.1% in inpatients, 75% in outpatients) were diagnosed within the first week, more than half of them were recognized in the first 24 hours. Factors associated with their diagnosis included older age (odds ratio [OR]=1.03; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.02-1.04), nursing home residence (OR, 1.8; 95% CI, 1.2-2.9), history of heart failure (OR, 4.3; 95% CI, 3.0-6.3), prior cardiac arrhythmias (OR, 1.8; 95% CI, 1.2-2.7), previously diagnosed coronary artery disease (OR, 1.5; 95% CI, 1.04-2.0), arterial hypertension (OR, 1.5; 95% CI, 1.1-2.1), respiratory rate ≥30 breaths per minute (OR, 1.6; 95% CI, 1.1-2.3), blood pH <7.35 (OR, 3.2; 95% CI, 1.8-5.7), blood urea nitrogen ≥30 mg/dL (OR, 1.5; 95% CI, 1.1-2.2), serum sodium <130 mmol/L (OR, 1.8; 95% CI, 1.02-3.1), hematocrit <30% (OR, 2.0; 95% CI, 1.3-3.2), pleural effusion on presenting chest x-ray (OR, 1.6; 95% CI, 1.1-2.4), and inpatient care (OR, 4.8; 95% CI, 2.8-8.3). Incident cardiac complications were associated with increased risk of death at 30 days after adjustment for baseline Pneumonia Severity Index score (OR, 1.6; 95% CI, 1.04-2.5). Incident cardiac complications are common in patients with community-acquired pneumonia and are associated with increased short-term mortality. Older age, nursing home residence, preexisting cardiovascular disease, and pneumonia severity are associated with their occurrence. Further studies are required to test risk stratification and prevention and treatment strategies for cardiac complications in this population.

                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
                05 December 2016
                : 11
                : 3051-3058
                [1 ]Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Chest Medicine, Changhua Christian Hospital, Changhua
                [2 ]Institute of Biomedical Sciences, National Chung Hsing University, Taichung
                [3 ]Department of Chest Medicine, Taipei Veterans General Hospital, Taipei
                [4 ]School of Medicine, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei
                [5 ]Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Changhua Christian Hospital
                [6 ]Department of Beauty Science and Graduate Institute of Beauty Science Technology, Chien-Kuo Technology University
                [7 ]Department of Internal Medicine, Internal Medicine Research Center, Changhua Christian Hospital, Changhua
                [8 ]Department of Internal Medicine, Far Eastern Memorial Hospital, Taipei
                [9 ]Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, Yuan Ze University, Zhongli City, Taoyuan
                [10 ]Department of Respiratory Care, College of Health Sciences, Chang Jung Christian University, Tainan
                [11 ]School of Medicine, Chung Shan Medical University, Taichung, Taiwan
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Ching-Hsiung Lin, Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Chest Medicine, Changhua Christian Hospital, 135 Nanxiao St, Changhua City, Changhua County 500, Taiwan, Tel +886 4 723 8595 1039, Fax +886 4 723 2942, Email teddy@

                These authors contributed equally to this work

                © 2016 Lin 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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