Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) who experience an exacerbation have an increased risk for both myocardial infarctions (MI) and ischemic stroke.
Researchers from the United Kingdom analyzed the risk of MI or stroke after exacerbation of COPD in 25,857 patients with the disease. Among the patients, 524 MI were identified in 426 patients and 633 ischemic strokes in 482 patients.
Results showed that exacerbation rates were significantly higher in patients with COPD experiencing MI or stroke compared with those who did not suffer from these conditions. In addition, there was a 2.27-fold increased risk of MI 1 to 5 days after a COPD exacerbation and a 1.26-fold increase of stroke 1 to 49 days after a COPD exacerbation.
Researchers suggest the findings provide good rationale for treating patients with COPD in both the stable and exacerbation states to reduce cardiovascular events.
This study is published in the May issue of CHEST, the peer-reviewed journal of the American College of Chest Physicians.
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