Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease prevalence in Lebanon: A cross-sectional descriptive study

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Background: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) continues to increase worldwide. The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence of COPD in Lebanese adults. Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out using a multistage cluster sample from all over Lebanon. Residents aged 40 years and over were enrolled. Subjects underwent baseline spirometry and answered a questionnaire. After an albuterol + ipratropium bromide bronchodilator, a posttest was performed. Results: Of 2201 individuals, only 33.3% had never smoked. The prevalence of COPD by the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease definition, was 9.7% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 8.5%-10.9%). According to the 5% lower limit of normal definition of COPD, the prevalence was 12.5% (95% CI: 11.2%-13.9%). A total of 20.2% were already diagnosed by a physician. No differences in symptoms across stages of COPD were found, but there was a significant trend for a higher number of visits to the emergency room and to the doctor (P < 0.001), and a higher number of hospitalizations (P < 0.001). Older individuals had an increased risk of COPD (adjusted odds ratio [ORa] = 1.05); so did "ever" cigarette smokers (ORa= 4.88) and water-pipe smokers (ORa = 2.53). Conclusion: This is the first epidemiological study in Lebanon that determined COPD prevalence and the link with water-pipe smoking. © 2011 Waked et al, publisher and licensee Dove Medical Press Ltd.

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Waked, M., Khayat, G., & Salameh, P. (2011). Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease prevalence in Lebanon: A cross-sectional descriptive study. Clinical Epidemiology, 3(1), 315–323.

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