Contributors of the severity of airflow limitation in COPD patients

Yoonki Hong, Eun Jin Chae, Joon Beom Seo, Ji Hyun Lee, Eun Kyung Kim, Young Kyung Lee, Tae Hyung Kim, Woo Jin Kim, Jin Hwa Lee, Sang Min Lee, Sangyeub Lee, Seong Yong Lim, Tae Rim Shin, Ho II Yoon, Seung Soo Sheen, Seung Won Ra, Jae Seung Lee, Jin Won Huh, Sang Do Lee, Yeon Mok Oh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Background: Although airway obstruction in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is due to pathologic processes in both the airways and the lung parenchyma, the contribution of these processes, as well as other factors, have not yet been evaluated quantitatively. We therefore quantitatively evaluated the factors contributing to airflow limitation in patients with COPD. Methods: The 213 COPD patients were aged >45 years, had smoked >10 pack-years of cigarettes, and had a post-bronchodilator forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV 1)/forced vital capacity (FVC) <0.7. All patients were evaluated by medical interviews, physical examination, spirometry, bronchodilator reversibility tests, lung volume, and 6-minute walk tests. In addition, volumetric computed tomography (CT) was performed to evaluate airway wall thickness, emphysema severity, and mean lung density ratio at full expiration and inspiration. Multiple linear regression analysis was performed to identify the variables independently associated with FEV 1 - the index of the severity of airflow limitation. Results: Multiple linear regression analysis showed that CT measurements of mean lung density ratio (standardized coefficient β= -0.46; p<0.001), emphysema severity (volume fraction of the lung less than -950 HU at full inspiration; β= -0.24; p<0.001), and airway wall thickness (mean wall area %; β= -0.19, p=0.001), as well as current smoking status (β = -0.14; p=0.009) were independent contributors to FEV 1. Conclusion: Mean lung density ratio, emphysema severity, and airway wall thickness evaluated by volumetric CT and smoking status could independently contribute to the severity of airflow limitation in patients with COPD. Copyright

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-14
Number of pages7
JournalTuberculosis and Respiratory Diseases
Issue number1
StatePublished - 30 Jan 2012


  • Forced expiratory volumes
  • Pulmonary disease, chronic obstructive
  • Tomography, X-ray computed


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