Anemia in COPD: A Systematic Review of the Prevalence, Quality of Life, and Mortality

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Anemia is common in patients with chronic diseases. However, little is known regarding the prevalence of comorbid anemia and its impact on quality of life, healthcare utilization, and mortality in patients with COPD. We conducted a systematic review and synthesis of the literature (1966 to March 2010). The prevalence of comorbid anemia in patients with COPD ranges from 7.5% to 34%, depending upon the populations selected and diagnostic tools employed to determine the level of hemoglobin. Comorbid anemia in patients with COPD was associated with greater healthcare resource utilization, impaired quality of life, older age, and male gender. Moreover, anemia in patients with COPD is an independent prognostic predictor of premature mortality and a greater likelihood of hospitalization. The true prevalence of anemia in patients with COPD is unknown. There is a lack of consensus agreement regarding this hematological abnormality's true frequency. Based on the findings from the existing literature, more work is necessary to establish the true prevalence of anemia in COPD. Robust and prospective clinical studies are needed to improve the management of COPD patients with comorbid anemia.

Keywords: COPD; anemia; healthcare utilization; morbidity; mortality; quality life

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Health Professions, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, United Kingdom, UK

Publication date: May 1, 2011

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