Purpose: There is a lack of consensus on the most appropriate early diagnostic strategy, criteria for early access to treatment and follow-up approach for patients with COPD.
Materials and methods: A Delphi consensus project investigated the early management of COPD. We formulated two questionnaires for completion by pneumologists in Italy.
Results: A total of 207 specialists completed questionnaire 1 and 184 of them questionnaire 2, between November 2016 and October 2017. Early diagnosis of COPD was considered uncommon for 93.2% of the expert panel. Regardless of the definition of "early diagnosis" - a diagnosis made before the clinical manifestation of the disease for most responders (60.4%) - experts were confident of the positive effects of early disease management, which they consider is effective in modifying the natural history of the disease. Lack of awareness of the disease was considered the first limiting factor to early COPD management for 78% of respondents. The most effective steps to reduce functional decline were considered to be smoking cessation, followed by long-acting β2-agonist (LABA)/long-acting muscarinic antagonist (LAMA), LAMA, LABA, and finally inhaled corticosteroid/LABA (P<0.01 for each paired comparison). Specialists considered it "inappropriate" for general practitioners to perform both the early diagnosis and therapy of COPD without the involvement of a specialist.
Conclusion: Early management of COPD is uncommon, and although data on the effects of early disease management on long-term outcomes are limited, Italian experts are confident of the clinical efficacy of this approach.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||International journal of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease|
|Publication status||Published - Feb 23 2019|
- Adrenal Cortex Hormones/administration & dosage
- Adrenergic beta-2 Receptor Agonists/administration & dosage
- Bronchodilator Agents/administration & dosage
- Delphi Technique
- Drug Combinations
- Early Diagnosis
- Early Medical Intervention/standards
- Evidence-Based Medicine
- Middle Aged
- Muscarinic Antagonists/administration & dosage
- Practice Guidelines as Topic/standards
- Predictive Value of Tests
- Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive/diagnosis
- Surveys and Questionnaires
- Treatment Outcome