Exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

a patients' perspective

Rachel Adams, Niels Chavannes, Kevin Gruffydd-Jones, Marianne Stubbe Ostergaard, David Brendan Price

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Exacerbations are now an important clinical variable for research into, and management of, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Emphasis is usually on reductions in the incidence of exacerbations and their impact on quality of life. For such research to be useful and comparable there needs to be a clearly defined understanding of what is meant by the term 'exacerbation'. The aim of this study was to explore the notion of COPD exacerbations from the viewpoint of patients who had recently suffered an exacerbation.
Methods:Using principles from grounded theory we conducted semi-structured, in-depth interviews with 23 volunteers from Denmark, the Netherlands and the UK who were identified as having had a COPD exacerbation. Interviews were recorded locally and translated into English for analysis. Notable themes were identified for each informant and their occurrences compared.
Results: Patients' reasons for consulting fell into four categories: 'frightening change'; 'change in sputum colour'; 'gradual deterioration'; and 'opportunistic diagnosis'. Most patients consulted frequently about their COPD, but did not afford their exacerbations the same degree of prominence as healthcare professionals (HCPs).
Conclusions: These data provide a new way of thinking about COPD exacerbations, offering a greater understanding and classification of the reasons underlying the decision of COPD patients to consult with HCPs. They suggest that the patient perspective of exacerbations is more complex than previously thought. These findings could be applied to clinical practice and research, facilitating focussed decisions on COPD management.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)102-109
Number of pages8
JournalPrimary Care Respiratory Journal
Volume15
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2006

Fingerprint

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Disease Progression
Research
Interviews
Delivery of Health Care
Denmark
Disease Management
Sputum
Netherlands
Volunteers
Color
Quality of Life
Incidence

Keywords

  • acute disease
  • adult
  • aged
  • aged 80 and over
  • Denmark
  • memale
  • Great Britain
  • humans
  • male
  • middle aged
  • Netherlands
  • primary health care
  • chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • quality of life
  • questionnaires
  • severity of illness index
  • sickness impact profile

Cite this

Exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease : a patients' perspective. / Adams, Rachel; Chavannes, Niels; Gruffydd-Jones, Kevin; Ostergaard, Marianne Stubbe; Price, David Brendan.

In: Primary Care Respiratory Journal, Vol. 15, No. 2, 04.2006, p. 102-109.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Adams, Rachel ; Chavannes, Niels ; Gruffydd-Jones, Kevin ; Ostergaard, Marianne Stubbe ; Price, David Brendan. / Exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease : a patients' perspective. In: Primary Care Respiratory Journal. 2006 ; Vol. 15, No. 2. pp. 102-109.
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