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Balance impairment and systemic inflammation in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

Authors Tudorache E, Oancea C, Avram C, Fira-Mladinescu O, Petrescu L, Timar B

Received 3 June 2015

Accepted for publication 17 July 2015

Published 8 September 2015 Volume 2015:10(1) Pages 1847—1852


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Richard Russell

Emanuela Tudorache,1 Cristian Oancea,1 Claudiu Avram,2 Ovidiu Fira-Mladinescu,1 Lucian Petrescu,3 Bogdan Timar4

1Department of Pulmonology, University of Medicine and Pharmacy “Victor Babes”, 2Physical Education and Sport Faculty, West University of Timisoara, 3Department of Cardiology, University of Medicine and Pharmacy “Victor Babes”, 4Department of Biostatistics and Medical Informatics, University of Medicine and Pharmacy “Victor Babes”, Timisoara, Romania

Background/purpose: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), especially in severe forms, is commonly associated with systemic inflammation and balance impairment. The aim of our study was to evaluate the impact on equilibrium of stable and exacerbation (acute exacerbation of COPD [AECOPD]) phases of COPD and to investigate if there is a connection between lower extremity muscle weakness and systemic inflammation.
Methods: We enrolled 41 patients with COPD (22 stable and 19 in AECOPD) and 20 healthy subjects (control group), having no significant differences regarding the anthropometric data. We analyzed the differences in balance tests scores: Falls Efficacy Scale-International (FES-I) questionnaire, Berg Balance Scale (BBS), Timed Up and Go (TUG) test, Single Leg Stance (SLS), 6-minute walking distance (6MWD), isometric knee extension (IKE) between these groups, and also the correlation between these scores and inflammatory biomarkers.
Results: The presence and severity of COPD was associated with significantly decreased score in IKE (P<0.001), 6MWD (P<0.001), SLS (P<0.001), and BBS (P<0.001), at the same time noting a significant increase in median TUG score across the studied groups (P<0.001). The AECOPD group vs stable group presented a significant increase in high-sensitive C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) levels (10.60 vs 4.01; P=0.003) and decrease in PaO2 (70.1 vs 59.1; P<0.001). We observed that both IKE scores were significantly and positive correlated with all the respiratory volumes. In both COPD groups, we observed that fibrinogen reversely and significantly correlated with the 6MWD, and FES-I questionnaire is correlated positively with TUG test. Hs-CRP correlated reversely with the walking test and SLS test, while correlating positively with TUG test and FES-I questionnaire.
Conclusion: According to this study, COPD in advanced and acute stages is associated with an increased history of falls, systemic inflammation, balance impairment, and lower extremity muscle weakness.

Keywords: balance, COPD, inflammation, muscle, falls

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