To date, clinico-physiologic indices have not been compared with quantitative CT imaging indices in determining the risk of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) exacerbation. We therefore compared clinico-physiologic and CT imaging indices as risk factors for COPD exacerbation in patients with COPD. We retrospectively analyzed 260 COPD patients from pulmonary clinics at 11 hospitals in Korea from June 2005 to November 2009 and followed-up for at least one year. At the time of enrollment, none of these patients had COPD exacerbations for at least 2 months. All underwent clinico-physiologic and radiological evaluation for risk factors of COPD exacerbation. After 1 yr, 106 of the 260 patients had at least one exacerbation of COPD. Multiple logistic regression analysis showed that old age, high Charlson Index, and low FEV(1) were significant in a clinico-physiologic model, with C-statistics of 0.69, and that increased age and emphysema index were significant in a radiologic model, with C-statistics of 0.64. The difference between the two models was statistically significant (P = 0.04 by bootstrap analysis). Combinations of clinico-physiologic risk factors may be better than those of imaging risk factors in predicting COPD exacerbation.
Keywords: Computed Tomography; Exacerbation; Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive; Risk Factors.