Arterial vascular pruning, right ventricular size, and clinical outcomes in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease a longitudinal observational study

Academic Article


  • Copyright © 2019 by the American Thoracic Society Rationale: Cor pulmonale (right ventricular [RV] dilation) and cor pulmonale parvus (RV shrinkage) are both described in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The identification of emphysema as a shared risk factor suggests that additional disease characterization is needed to understand these widely divergent cardiac processes. Objectives: To explore the relationship between computed tomography measures of emphysema and distal pulmonary arterial morphology with RV volume, and their association with exercise capacity and mortality in ever-smokers with COPD enrolled in the COPDGene Study. Methods: Epicardial (myocardium and chamber) RV volume (RVEV), distal pulmonary arterial blood vessel volume (arterial BV5: vessels,5 mm2 in cross-section), and objective measures of emphysema were extracted from 3,506 COPDGene computed tomography scans. Multivariable linear and Cox regression models and the log-rank test were used to explore the association between emphysema, arterial BV5, and RVEV with exercise capacity (6-min-walk distance) and all-cause mortality. Measurements and Main Results: The RVEV was approximately 10% smaller in Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease stage 4 versus stage 1 COPD (P, 0.0001). In multivariable modeling, a 10-ml decrease in arterial BV5 (pruning) was associated with a 1-ml increase in RVEV. For a given amount of emphysema, relative preservation of the arterial BV5 was associated with a smaller RVEV. An increased RVEV was associated with reduced 6-minute-walk distance and in those with arterial pruning an increased mortality. Conclusions: Pulmonary arterial pruning is associated with clinically significant increases in RV volume in smokers with COPD and is related to exercise capacity and mortality in COPD.
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    Author List

  • Washko GR; Nardelli P; Ash SY; Sanchez-Ferrero GV; Rahaghi FN; Come CE; Dransfield MT; Kalhan R; Han MLK; Bhatt SP
  • Start Page

  • 454
  • End Page

  • 461
  • Volume

  • 200
  • Issue

  • 4