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Improving communication between the physician and the COPD patient: an evaluation of the utility of the COPD Assessment Test in primary care

Authors Lari S, Attaran D, Tohidi M

Received 4 June 2014

Accepted for publication 1 August 2014

Published 10 November 2014 Volume 2014:5 Pages 145—152


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 5

Editor who approved publication: Dr Robert Howland

Shahrzad M Lari, Davood Attaran, Mohammad Tohidi

COPD Research Center, School of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

Abstract: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. It is now considered a systemic inflammatory syndrome and is associated with important comorbidities. In addition to spirometry for evaluating the severity of airflow obstruction, an instrument is required for comprehensive assessment of the disease. The COPD Assessment Test (CAT) is a simple and valid tool for evaluating patient symptoms. The CAT can improve patient–physician communication during routine clinical visits and is useful for assessing functional status and response to treatment. The CAT has a strong correlation with other health status questionnaires, such as the St George's Respiratory Questionnaire. The main advantages of the CAT are its thorough coverage of the important clinical aspects of disease burden and the shorter time involved in completing it. The aim of this paper is to review the role of the CAT, to compare it with other health-related quality of life questionnaires in the assessment and management of COPD patients, and to emphasize the importance of patient–physician communication in the management of patients with the disease.

Keywords: chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, assessment test, communication, health status

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