A randomized trial of nocturnal oxygen therapy in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patients

University of Strasbourg, Strasburg, Alsace, France
European Respiratory Journal (Impact Factor: 7.64). 11/1999; 14(5):1002-8. DOI: 10.1183/09031936.99.14510029
Source: PubMed


The beneficial effects of nocturnal oxygen therapy (NOT) in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patients with mild-to-moderate daytime hypoxaemia (arterial oxygen tension (Pa,O2) in the range 7.4-9.2 kPa (56-69 mmHg)) and exhibiting sleep-related oxygen desaturation remains controversial. The effectiveness of NOT in that category of COPD patients was studied. The end points included pulmonary haemodynamic effects after 2 yrs of follow-up, survival and requirement for long-term oxygen therapy (LTOT). Seventy-six patients could be randomized, 41 were allocated to NOT and 35 to no NOT (control). The goal of NOT was to achieve an arterial oxygen saturation of >90% throughout the night. All these patients underwent polysomnography to exclude an associated obstructive sleep apnoea syndrome. The two groups exhibited an identical meansD daytime Pa,O2 of 8.4+/-0.4 kPa (63+/-3 mmHg) at baseline. Twenty-two patients (12 in the NOT group and 10 in the control group, p=0.98) required LTOT during the whole follow-up (35+/-14 months). Sixteen patients died, nine in the NOT group and seven in the control group (p=0.84). Forty-six patients were able to undergo pulmonary haemodynamic re-evaluation after 2 yrs, 24 in the NOT and 22 in the control group. In the control group, mean resting pulmonary artery pressure increased from 19.8+/-5.6 to 20.5+6.5 mmHg, which was not different from the change in mean pulmonary artery pressure in the NOT group, from 18.3+/-4.7 to 19.5+/-5.3 mmHg (p= 0.79). Nocturnal oxygen therapy did not modify the evolution of pulmonary haemodynamics and did not allow delay in the prescription of long-term oxygen therapy. No effect of NOT on survival was observed, but the small number of deaths precluded any firm conclusion. These results suggest that the prescription of nocturnal oxygen therapy in isolation is probably not justified in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patients.

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    • "In contrast to the more severely affected patients, those with more mild daytime resting hypoxemia, ie, PaO2 levels > 55 mmHg (Gorecka et al 1997) or >60 mmHg (Fletcher et al 1992), did not show significant responses to LTOT in terms of survival within randomized controlled trials. The same was found for patients without marked daytime hypoxemia but nocturnal desaturations (Chaouat et al 1999; Fletcher et al 1992). A potential limitation of these studies, however, is that the daily average time of oxygen use may have been too short to induce recognizable survival benefits in less ill patients. "
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    ABSTRACT: Patients with advanced COPD and acute or chronic respiratory failure are at high risk for death. Beyond pharmacological treatment, supplemental oxygen and mechanical ventilation are major treatment options. This review describes the physiological concepts underlying respiratory failure and its therapy, as well as important treatment outcomes. The rationale for the controlled supply of oxygen in acute hypoxic respiratory failure is undisputed. There is also a clear survival benefit from long-term oxygen therapy in patients withchronic hypoxia, while in mild, nocturnal, or exercise-induced hypoxemia such long-term benefits appear questionable. Furthermore, much evidence supports the use of non-invasive positivepressure ventilation in acute hypercapnic respiratory failure. It application reduces intubation and mortality rates, and the duration of intensive care unit or hospital stays, particularly in the presence of mild to moderate respiratory acidosis. COPD with chronic hypercapnic respiratory failurebecame a major indication for domiciliary mechanical ventilation, based on pathophysiological reasoning and on data regarding symptoms and quality of life. Still, however, its relevance for long-term survival has to be substantiated in prospective controlled studies. Such studies might preferentially recruit patients with repeated hypercapnic decompensation or a high risk for death, while ensuring effective ventilation and the patients' adherence to therapy.
    Preview · Article · Feb 2008 · International Journal of COPD
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    • "Fletcher and colleagues (1989), who adopted the first definition for “desaturator”, reported above, observed higher PAP values among desaturators than nondesaturators, and a better evolution of diurnal PAP among desaturators receiving, than among those not receiving, nocturnal oxygen (Fletcher et al 1992). When the second definition was used, cross-sectional studies showed either higher (Levi Valensi et al 1992) or similar (Chaouat et al 1997) PAP values among desaturators, while later longitudinal investigations demonstrated no influence of the “desaturator” condition (Chaouat et al 2001) and of oxygen administration (Chaouat et al 1999) on PAP. Rasche and colleagues (2001) reported that PAP during wakefulness was significantly correlated with lowest nocturnal SaO2, but not with time spent below 90% SaO2. "
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    ABSTRACT: Patients with COPD may show slow, progressive deteriorations in arterial blood gases during the night, particularly during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. This is mainly due to hypoventilation, while a deterioration of ventilation/perfusion mismatch plays a minor role. The severity of gas exchanges alterations is proportional to the degree of impairment of diurnal pulmonary function tests, particularly of partial pressure of oxygen (PaO2) and of carbon dioxide (PaCO2) in arterial blood, but correlations between diurnal and nocturnal blood gas levels are rather loose. Subjects with diurnal PaO2 of 60-70 mmHg are distinguished in "desaturators" and "nondesaturators" according to nocturnal oxyhemoglobin saturation behavior. The role of nocturnal hypoxemia as a determinant of alterations in sleep structure observed in COPD is dubious. Effects of the "desaturator" condition on pulmonary hemodynamics, evolution of diurnal blood gases, and life expectancy are also controversial. Conversely, it is generally accepted that occurrence of sleep apneas in COPD is associated with a worse evolution of the disease. Nocturnal polysomnographic monitoring in COPD is usually performed when coexistence of sleep apnea ("overlap syndrome") is suspected, while in most other cases nocturnal oximetry may be enough. Nocturnal oxygen attenuates sleep desaturations among stable patients, without increases in PaCO2 of clinical concern. Nocturnal treatment with positive pressure ventilators may give benefit to some stable hypercapnic subjects and patients with the overlap syndrome.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2006 · International Journal of COPD

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