Comparison of a network of primary care physicians and an open spirometry programme for COPD diagnosis.
ABSTRACT Early diagnosis of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) remains the cornerstone for effective management. In this study we compared an open spirometry programme and a case-finding programme providing spirometry to high-risk subjects selected by primary care physicians.
A network of primary care physicians was created after invitation and all participants received training on COPD and spirometry. The study team visited 12 primary care settings in each programme in a 1-year period. Spirometry was performed in all eligible participants. COPD diagnosis and classification was based on GOLD guidelines and evaluation by a chest physician.
Patients with acceptable spirometry were evaluated (n = 201 in the case-finding and n = 905 in the open spirometry programme). The proportion of newly diagnosed COPD was 27.9% in the case-finding programme compared to 8.4% in the open spirometry programme (p < 0.0001). The number needed-to-screen (NNS) for a new diagnosis of COPD was 3.6 in the case-finding programme compared to 11.9 in the open spirometry programme. The majority of newly diagnosed patients were classified in GOLD stages I an II. The average cost for a new diagnosis of COPD was 173 € in the open spirometry programme and 102 € in the case-finding programme.
A case-finding programme involving primary care physicians was more cost-effective for the identification of new cases of COPD compared to an open spirometry programme. The development of networks of primary care physicians with access to good quality spirometry and specialist consultation for early diagnosis of COPD is justified.
- SourceAvailable from: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: To investigate the effectiveness of case finding of patients at risk of developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, whether the method is suitable for use in general practice, how patients should be selected, and the time required. Cross sectional study. Two semirural general practices in the Netherlands. Participants: 651 smokers aged 35 to 70 years. Short standardised questionnaire on bronchial symptoms for current smokers, lung function with a spirometer, and the quality of the spirometric curve. Of the 201 smokers not taking drugs for a pulmonary condition, 169 produced an acceptable curve (fulfilling American Thoracic Society criteria). Of these, 30 (18%, 95% confidence interval 12% to 24%) had a forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV(1)) <80% of predicted. When smokers were preselected on the basis of chronic cough, the proportion with an FEV(1) <80% of predicted increased to 27% (17 of 64; 12% to 38%). Chronic cough was a better predictor of airflow obstruction than other symptoms, such as wheeze and dyspnoea. The presence of two symptoms was a slightly better predictor than cough only (odds ratio 3.02 (1.37 to 6.64) v 2.50 (1.14 to 5.52)). Age was also a good predictor of obstruction; smokers over 60 with cough had a 48% chance of having an obstruction. The mean time needed for spirometry was four minutes. Detecting one smoker with an FEV(1) <80% of predicted cost 5 pound sterling to 10 pound sterling. Trained practice assistants could check all patients who smoke for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease at little cost to the practice. Cough and age are the most important predictors of the disease. By testing one smoker a day, an average practice could identify one patient at risk a week.BMJ (Clinical research ed.). 07/2002; 324(7350):1370.
- [show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: To evaluate whether office spirometry by general practitioners (GPs) is feasible and may improve the diagnosis of asthma and COPD. A prospective, randomized, comparative trial was planned involving 57 Italian pulmonology centers and 570 GPs who had to enroll consecutive subjects aged 18 to 65 years with symptoms of asthma or COPD without a previous diagnosis. Patients were randomized 1:1 into two groups with an interactive voice responding system: conventional evaluation alone vs conventional evaluation and spirometry. Office spirometry was performed by GPs who were trained by reference specialists using a portable electronic spirometer (Spirobank Office; MIR; Rome, Italy). Diagnosis was confirmed by the reference specialist center in blind fashion. Seventy-four GPs complied to the trial. Of 333 patients enrolled, 136 nonrandom violators completed the protocol. Per-protocol analysis showed a concordant diagnosis between GPs and specialists in 78.6% of cases in the conventional evaluation-plus-spirometry group vs 69.2% in the conventional evaluation group (p = 0.35). In the intention-to-treat analysis, the respective percentages of concordant diagnosis were 57.9 and 56.7 (p = 0.87). Office spirometry by GPs is feasible, but frequent protocol violation and inadequate sample size did not allow us to prove a significant advantage of office spirometry in improving the diagnosis of asthma and COPD in standard general practice as organized at present in Italy, thus reinforcing the need for close cooperation between GPs and specialists in respiratory medicine.Chest 05/2006; 129(4):844-52. · 5.85 Impact Factor
- [show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: RECOMMENDATION 1: In patients with respiratory symptoms, particularly dyspnea, spirometry should be performed to diagnose airflow obstruction. Spirometry should not be used to screen for airflow obstruction in asymptomatic individuals. (Grade: strong recommendation, moderate-quality evidence.) RECOMMENDATION 2: Treatment for stable chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) should be reserved for patients who have respiratory symptoms and FEV1 less than 60% predicted, as documented by spirometry. (Grade: strong recommendation, moderate-quality evidence.) RECOMMENDATION 3: Clinicians should prescribe 1 of the following maintenance monotherapies for symptomatic patients with COPD and FEV1 less than 60% predicted: long-acting inhaled beta-agonists, long-acting inhaled anticholinergics, or inhaled corticosteroids. (Grade: strong recommendation, high-quality evidence.) RECOMMENDATION 4: Clinicians may consider combination inhaled therapies for symptomatic patients with COPD and FEV1 less than 60% predicted. (Grade: weak recommendation, moderate-quality evidence.) RECOMMENDATION 5: Clinicians should prescribe oxygen therapy in patients with COPD and resting hypoxemia (Pao2 < or =55 mm Hg). (Grade: strong recommendation, moderate-quality evidence.) RECOMMENDATION 6: Clinicians should consider prescribing pulmonary rehabilitation in symptomatic individuals with COPD who have an FEV1 less than 50% predicted. (Grade: weak recommendation, moderate-quality evidence.).Annals of internal medicine 11/2007; 147(9):633-8. · 13.98 Impact Factor