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Beta-blockers and health-related quality of life in patients with peripheral arterial disease and COPD

Authors van Gestel YR, Hoeks SE, Sin DD, Stam H, Mertens FW, Bax JJ, van Domburg RT, Poldermans D

Published 8 May 2009 Volume 2009:4 Pages 177—183


Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 4

Yvette RBM van Gestel1, Sanne E Hoeks1, Don D Sin2, Henk Stam3, Frans W Mertens3, Jeroen J Bax4, Ron T van Domburg5, Don Poldermans6

1Department of Anesthesiology, Erasmus Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands; 2Department of Medicine, University of British Columbia and The James Hogg iCAPTURe Center, St. Paul’s Hospital, Vancouver, Canada; 3Department of Pulmonology, Erasmus Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands; 4Department of Cardiology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, The Netherlands; 5Department of Cardiology, Erasmus Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands; 6Department of Vascular Surgery, Erasmus Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Background: Beta-blockers are frequently withheld in patients with cardiovascular disease who also have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) because of concerns that they might provoke bronchospasm and cause deterioration in health status. Although beta1-selective beta-blockers are associated with reduced mortality in COPD patients, their effects on health status are unknown. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between beta-blockers and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in patients with peripheral arterial disease and COPD.

Methods: Of the original cohort of 3371 vascular surgery patients, 1310 had COPD of whom 469 survived during long-term follow-up. These COPD patients were sent the Short Form-36 (SF-36) health-related quality of life questionnaire, which was completed and returned by 326 (70%) patients.

Results: No significant differences in any of the SF-36 domains were observed between COPD patients who did and did not use beta-blockers (p > 0.05 for all). Furthermore, beta-blockers were not associated with any impairment in HRQOL among patients with COPD.

Conclusion: Beta-blockers had no material impact on the HRQOL of patients with peripheral arterial disease who also had COPD. This suggests that beta-blockers can, in most circumstances, be administered to patients with COPD without impairment in HRQOL.

Keywords: beta-blockers, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, vascular surgery, health-related quality of life

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