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Publication by Bestcilia partner: Body Mass Index (BMI) and spirometry in PCD patient management

Two of Bestcilia’s partners, Claire Hogg and Kim Nielsen, have recently made their contribution to a significant publication. The article focuses on a study, which used BMI and spirometry as a potential method of assessment in long-term patient management. It may be considered a trailblazer, as it is the first study to simultaneously investigate both these measures longitudinally, i.e. over an extended period of time.

The research team determined BMI and spirometry in 158 PCD children and adolescents from the UK, Italy and Denmark at first presentation and subsequently during follow-up visits; the annual measurements were analyzed over blocks of 2, 4 and 6 consecutive years. Additionally, sputum pathogens were recorded in the course of the study.

Admittedly, the results of the study did not single out either of the two methods as a reliable indicator for patient management. The two most common pathogens found in the patient cohort, H. Influenzae and P. aeruginosa, were not linked to any spirometry changes. On top of that, the age of patient referral was not relevant for BMI measurement or spirometry: pre-school referral did not translate into better results in either. In all three centers, patients who received centralized care were showed to have steady scores in both BMI and spirometry; this appears to exclude these tests as sole indicators of PCD management. They can nevertheless be used in other ways, as a tool to improve the overall quality of care in patient management.

Future studies are necessary to determine the exact role of spirometry and BMI measurements in patient management, as they could potentially be used to identify higher-risk patients, more susceptible to lung failure and nutritional problems.

Full article is available here.