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      Impact of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease on postoperative recurrence in patients with resected non-small-cell lung cancer

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          This study aimed to determine whether the severity of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) affects recurrence-free survival in non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients after surgical resection.

          Patients and methods

          A retrospective study was performed on 421 consecutive patients who had undergone lobectomy for NSCLC from January 2008 to June 2011. Classification of COPD severity was based on guidelines of the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD). Characteristics among the three subgroups were compared and recurrence-free survivals were analyzed.


          A total of 172 patients were diagnosed with COPD (124 as GOLD-1, 46 as GOLD-2, and two as GOLD-3). The frequencies of recurrence were significantly higher in patients with higher COPD grades ( P<0.001). Recurrence-free survival at 5 years was 78.1%, 70.4%, and 46.4% in non-COPD, mild COPD, and moderate/severe COPD groups, respectively ( P<0.001). By univariate analysis, the age, sex, smoking history, COPD severity, tumor size, histology, and pathological stage were associated with recurrence-free survival. Multivariate analysis showed that older age, male, moderate/severe COPD, and advanced stage were independent risk factors associated with recurrence-free survival.


          NSCLC patients with COPD are at high risk for postoperative recurrence, and moderate/severe COPD is an independent unfavorable prognostic factor.

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          Most cited references 22

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          The new lung cancer staging system.

          The International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) has conducted an extensive initiative to inform the revision of the lung cancer staging system. This involved development of an international database along with extensive analysis of a large population of patients and their prognoses. This article reviews the recommendations of the IASLC International Staging Committee for the definitions for the TNM descriptors and the stage grouping in the new non-small cell lung cancer staging system.
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            COPD prevalence is increased in lung cancer, independent of age, sex and smoking history.

            Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a common comorbid disease in lung cancer, estimated to affect 40-70% of lung cancer patients, depending on diagnostic criteria. As smoking exposure is found in 85-90% of those diagnosed with either COPD or lung cancer, coexisting disease could merely reflect a shared smoking exposure. Potential confounding by age, sex and pack-yr smoking history, and/or by the possible effects of lung cancer on spirometry, may result in over-diagnosis of COPD prevalence. In the present study, the prevalence of COPD (pre-bronchodilator Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease 2+ criteria) in patients diagnosed with lung cancer was 50% compared with 8% in a randomly recruited community control group, matched for age, sex and pack-yr smoking exposure (n = 602, odds ratio 11.6; p<0.0001). In a subgroup analysis of those with lung cancer and lung function measured prior to the diagnosis of lung cancer (n = 127), we found a nonsignificant increase in COPD prevalence following diagnosis (56-61%; p = 0.45). After controlling for important variables, the prevalence of COPD in newly diagnosed lung cancer cases was six-fold greater than in matched smokers; this is much greater than previously reported. We conclude that COPD is both a common and important independent risk factor for lung cancer.
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              Global strategy for the diagnosis, management, and prevention of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease


                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
                29 December 2015
                : 11
                : 43-49
                Department of Thoracic Surgery, China–Japan Friendship Hospital, Beijing, People’s Republic of China
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Deruo Liu, Department of Thoracic Surgery, China–Japan Friendship Hospital, Yinghua East Road No 2, Chaoyang District, Beijing 100029, People’s Republic of China, Tel +86 10 8420 6186, Fax +86 10 8420 6200, Email deruoliu@
                © 2016 Qiang 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.

                Original Research

                Respiratory medicine

                lung neoplasms, surgery, pulmonary function test, prognosis


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