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What can predict the exacerbation severity in asthma?

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There are many well-defined risk factors for fatal asthma exacerbation; however, few data exist about the link between the severity of asthma and severity of exacerbation. The aim of this study was to determine if there is any patient and disease-related factor that predicts the severity of asthma exacerbation. The retrospective data of asthmatic patients followed up in our clinic were analyzed. Asthmatic patients who had at least one exacerbation were included. Patient and disease characteristics, comorbidities, and compliance were evaluated. We analyzed 335 asthma exacerbations of 189 asthmatic patients. Eighteen patients had intermittent asthma, 115 patients had mild persistent asthma, 45 patients had moderate persistent asthma, and 11 patients had severe persistent asthma. Of the 189 asthmatic patients 8.1% of the exacerbations were mild, 52.5% were moderate, and 39.4% were severe. There was a significant correlation between the severity of asthma and severity of exacerbation (r = 0.32; p < 0.001). When elderly (≥60 years old) and younger (<60 years old) asthmatic patients were compared, elderly asthmatic patients had severe asthma exacerbation significantly at a higher rate than younger asthmatic patients (severe asthma exacerbation rates are 67.3 and 33.9% in elderly patients and younger asthmatic patients, respectively; p < 0.001). A significant correlation was found between the severity of exacerbation and age (r = 0.25; p < 0.001). Among the other patient and disease-related factors, asthma severity and older age were the only significant factors that contributed to the severity of exacerbation. These data show that older age as a patient-related factor and worse asthma severity as a disease-related factor could contribute to exacerbation severity in asthmatic patients.
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Keywords: Asthma; elderly; exacerbation; older age; retrospective; risk factor; severity

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: From the Departments of Pulmonary Medicine and 2: Public Health, Gazi University School of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey

Publication date: 2007-05-01

More about this publication?
  • Allergy and Asthma Proceedings is a peer reviewed publication dedicated to distributing timely scientific research regarding advancements in the knowledge and practice of allergy, asthma and immunology. Its primary readership consists of allergists and pulmonologists.

    The goal of the Proceedings is to publish articles with a predominantly clinical focus which directly impact quality of care for patients with allergic disease and asthma.

    Featured topics include asthma, rhinitis, sinusitis, food allergies, allergic skin diseases, diagnostic techniques, allergens, and treatment modalities. Published material includes peer-reviewed original research, clinical trials and review articles.

    Articles marked "F" offer free full text for personal noncommercial use only.

    The journal is indexed in Thomson Reuters Web of Science and Science Citation Index Expanded, plus the National Library of Medicine's PubMed service.
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