Sex differences between women and men with COPD: A new analysis of the 3CIA study

Tamara Alonso Pérez, Elena García Castillo, Julio Ancochea, Teresa María Pastor-Sanz, Pere Almagro, Pablo Martínez-Camblor, Marc Miravitlles, Monica Rodriguez-Carballeira, Annie Navarro, Bernd Lamprecht, Ana S. Ramírez-García Luna, Bernhard Kaiser, Inmaculada Alfageme, Ciro Casanova, Cristobal Esteban, Juan J. Soler-Cataluña, Juan P de-Torres, Bartolome R Celli, Jose M Marin, Jose Luis Lopez-CamposGerben Ter Riet, Patricia Sobradillo, Peter Lange, Judith Garcia-Aymerich, Josep Maria Antó,, Alice Turner, MeiLan K Han, Arnulf Langhammer, Alice Sternberg, Linda Leivseth, Per Bakke

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Background There is partial evidence that COPD is expressed differently in women than in men, namely on symptoms, pulmonary function, exacerbations, comorbidities or prognosis. There is a need to improve the characterization of COPD in females. Methods We obtained and pooled data of 17 139 patients from 22 COPD cohorts and analysed the clinical differences by sex, establishing the relationship between these characteristics in women and the prognosis and severity of the disease. Comparisons were established with standard statistics and survival analysis, including crude and multivariate Cox-regression analysis. Results Overall, 5355 (31.2%) women were compared with men with COPD. Women were younger, had lower pack-years, greater FEV1%, lower BMI and a greater number of exacerbations (all p < 0.05). On symptoms, women reported more dyspnea, equal cough but less expectoration (p < 0.001). There were no differences in the BODE index score in women (2.4) versus men (2.4) (p = 0.5), but the distribution of all BODE components was highly variable by sex within different thresholds of BODE. On prognosis, 5-year survival was higher in COPD females (86.9%) than in males (76.3%), p < 0.001, in all patients and within each of the specific comorbidities that we assessed. The crude and adjusted RR and 95% C.I. for death in males was 1.82 (1.69–1.96) and 1.73 (1.50–2.00), respectively. Conclusions COPD in women has some characteristic traits expressed differently than compared to men, mainly with more dyspnea and COPD exacerbations and less phlegm, among others, although long-term survival appears better in female COPD patients.
Original languageEnglish
JournalRespiratory Medicine
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 25 Aug 2020


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