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Quantitative CT Analysis in Patients with Pulmonary Emphysema: Do Calculated Differences Between Full Inspiration and Expiration Correlate with Lung Function?

Authors Song L, Leppig JA, Hubner RH, Lassen-Schmidt BC, Neumann K, Theilig DC, Feldhaus FW, Fahlenkamp UL, Hamm B, Song W, Jin Z, Doellinger F

Received 12 March 2020

Accepted for publication 2 July 2020

Published 3 August 2020 Volume 2020:15 Pages 1877—1886

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/COPD.S253602

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Richard Russell


Lan Song,1,* Jonas A Leppig,2,* Ralf H Hubner,3 Bianca C Lassen-Schmidt,4 Konrad Neumann,5 Dorothea C Theilig,2 Felix W Feldhaus,2 Ute L Fahlenkamp,2 Bernd Hamm,2 Wei Song,1 Zhengyu Jin,1 Felix Doellinger2

1Department of Radiology, Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical College, Beijing, People’s Republic of China; 2Department of Radiology, Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany; 3Department of Internal Medicine/Infectious Diseases and Respiratory Medicine, Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany; 4Fraunhofer Institute for Digital Medicine MEVIS, Bremen, Germany; 5Institute of Biometrics and Clinical Epidemiology, Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Correspondence: Zhengyu Jin
Department of Radiology, Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical College, Shuaifuyuan No. 1, Dongcheng District, Beijing, People’s Republic of China
Tel +86 10 69 155 439
Fax +86 10 69 155 058
Email jinzy@pumch.cn

Purpose: The aim of this retrospective study was to evaluate correlations between parameters of quantitative computed tomography (QCT) analysis, especially the 15th percentile of lung attenuation (P15), and parameters of clinical tests in a large group of patients with pulmonary emphysema.
Patients and Methods: One hundred and seventy-two patients with pulmonary emphysema and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) global initiative for chronic obstructive lung disease (GOLD) stage 3 or 4 were assessed by nonenhanced thin-section CT scans in full inspiratory and expiratory breath-hold, pulmonary function test (PFT), a 6-minute walk test (6MWT), and quality of life questionnaires (SGRQ and CAT). QCT parameters included total lung volume (TLV), total emphysema score (TES), and P15, all measured at inspiration (IN) and expiration (EX). Differences between inspiration and expiration were calculated for TLV (TLVDiff), TES (TESDiff), and P15 (P15Diff). Spearman correlation analysis was performed.
Results: CT-measured lung volume in inspiration (TLVIN) correlated strongly with spirometry-measured total lung capacity (TLC) (r=0.81, p< 0.001) and moderately to strongly with residual volume (RV), forced vital capacity (FVC), and forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1)/FVC (r=0.60, 0.56, and − 0.49, each p< 0.001). Lung volume in expiration (TLVEX) correlated moderately to strongly with TLC, RV and FEV1/FVC ratio (r=0.75, 0.66, and − 0.43, each p< 0.001). TES and P15 showed stronger correlations with the carbon monoxide transfer coefficient (KCO%) (r= − 0.42, 0.44, both p< 0.001), when measured during expiration. P15Diff correlated moderately with KCO% and carbon monoxide diffusing capacity (DLCO%) (r= 0.41, 0.40, both p< 0.001). The 6MWT and most QCT parameters showed significant differences between COPD GOLD 3 and 4 groups.
Conclusion: Our results suggest that QCT can help predict the severity of lung function decrease in patients with pulmonary emphysema and COPD GOLD 3 or 4. Some QCT parameters, including P15EX and P15Diff, correlated moderately to strongly with parameters of pulmonary function tests.

Keywords: chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, pulmonary emphysema, quantitative CT, pulmonary function test

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