Gender differences in the management and experience of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

Louise Watson, Jorgen Vestbo, Dirkje S. Postma, Marc Decramer, Stephen Rennard, Victor A. Kiri, Paul A. Vermeire, Joan B. Soriano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

120 Scopus citations


Whether women receive the same medical care for COPD as men and if they are at risk of different outcomes as a result, is not known. The Confronting COPD International Survey was performed in the USA, Canada, France, Italy, Germany, The Netherlands, Spain and the UK in 2000 with 3265 COPD participants. Forty-one per cent were women; mean age in women and men was 61.2 (sd 10.5) and 64.4 (11.0) years, mean pack-years of smoking 36 (29) and 46 (35) years, respectively. After adjusting for age, pack-years, country and severe dyspnea (MRC scores 5 and 4), women were less likely to have had spirometry (OR 0.84, 95% C.I. 0.72-0.98) but more likely to get smoking cessation advice (OR 1.57, 1.33-1.86). Despite significantly lower pack-years of smoking, women were more likely to report severe dyspnea than men (OR 1.30, 1.10-1.54), with similar cough (OR 1.08, 0.92-1.27) and less sputum (OR 0.84, 0.72-0.98). There were no differences in the risk of hospitalisation or emergency room visit. This study indicates that gender differences in COPD care and outcomes exist.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1207-1213
Number of pages7
JournalRespiratory Medicine
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2004


  • COPD
  • Gender
  • Medical care
  • Symptoms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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