Risk factors for chronic obstructive lung disease in Saudi Arabia

Respir Med. 1994 Aug;88(7):519-22. doi: 10.1016/s0954-6111(05)80334-8.


Based on the clinical impression of a relatively high number of non smoking women with COPD at a tertiary care facility in Saudi Arabia, we performed a case-control study to reveal possible risk factors. Our hypothesis was that the extensive use of incense burners among Saudis was a risk factor of COPD. Fifty consecutive patients with COPD and 71 healthy controls were questioned about risk factors of COPD. As expected more COPD-men than control men were smokers. Very few women smoked. We found no difference in the use of incense burners between cases and controls. On the other hand, two-thirds of the COPD-women and only 1/20 of the control women had been exposed to indoor open fire for more than 20 yr (P < 0.05). Accordingly, indoor exposure to open fire of wood or biomass seems to be a risk factor of COPD among Saudi women.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Air Pollution, Indoor / adverse effects
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung / physiopathology
  • Lung Diseases, Obstructive / etiology*
  • Lung Diseases, Obstructive / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Respiratory Function Tests
  • Risk Factors
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Smoke
  • Wood


  • Smoke