Evolution of emphysema in relation to smoking

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Purpose: We have little knowledge about the evolution of emphysema, and relatively little is understood about its evolution in relation to smoking habits. This study aims to assess the evolution of emphysema in asymptomatic current and former smokers over2 years and to investigate the association with subjects' characteristics. The study was approvedbyour Ethics Committee and all participants provided written informed consent. Materials and methods: We measured emphysema by automatic low-dose computed tomography densitometry in 254 current and 282 former smokers enrolled in a lung-cancer screening. The measures were repeated after 2 years. The association between subjects' characteristics, smoking habits and emphysema were assessed by chi-squared and Wilcoxon tests. Univariate and multivariate odds ratios (OR) with 95% confidence intervals (CI) were calculated for the risk of emphysema worsening according to subjects' characteristics. We assessed the trend of increasing risk of emphysema progression by smoking habits using the Mantel-Haenszel chi-squared test. Results: The median percentage increase in emphysema over a 2-year period was significantly higher in current than in former smokers (OR 1.8; 95% CI 1.3-2.6; p

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)286-292
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Radiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2010


  • Computed tomography
  • Densitometry
  • Lung cancer screening
  • Pulmonary emphysema
  • Smoking-related disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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