Effects of Severity of Long-Standing Congestive Heart Failure on Pulmonary Function

Respir Med. 1998 Dec;92(12):1321-5. doi: 10.1016/s0954-6111(98)90136-6.

Abstract

To investigate the effects of severity of long-standing congestive heart failure (CHF) on pulmonary function, we studied 53 (47 men) consecutive patients, all heart transplant candidates. Their mean (+/- SD) age and ejection fraction were 47 +/- 12 years and 23 +/- 7%, respectively. All patients underwent spirometry, lung volume, diffusion capacity (DLCO), maximum inspiratory (PImax) and expiratory pressure (PEmax) measurement. Maximum cardiopulmonary exercise test on a treadmill was also performed to determine maximum oxygen consumption (VO2max). On the basis of VO2max, the patients were then divided into those with a VO2max > 14 ml min-1 kg-1 (group 1, n = 30) and those with a VO2max < or = 14 ml min-1 kg-1 (group 2, n = 23). In comparison with group 1, group 2 patients had lower FEV1/FVC (70 +/- 8% vs 75 +/- 7%, P = 0.008), lower FEF25-75 (46 +/- 21 vs 70 +/- 26%pred, P < 0.001), lower TLC (76 +/- 15 vs 85 +/- 13%pred, P = 0.02) and lower PImax (68 +/- 20 vs 87 +/- 22 cmH2O, P = 0.003), but comparable DLCO (84 +/- 15 vs 88 +/- 20%pred, P = N.S.), and PEmax (99 +/- 25 vs 96 +/- 22 cmH2O, P = N.S.). In conclusion, our data suggest that respiratory abnormalities, such as restrictive defects, airway obstruction, and inspiratory muscle weakness, are more pronounced in patients with severe CHF than in those with mild-to-moderate disease. Further studies are required to investigate the extent to which these abnormalities contribute to dyspnoea during daily activities in patients with heart failure.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Chronic Disease
  • Female
  • Heart Failure / metabolism
  • Heart Failure / physiopathology*
  • Humans
  • Lung / physiopathology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Oxygen Consumption
  • Respiratory Function Tests
  • Time Factors