Frequency of acute exacerbation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in patients taking low dose azithromycin prophylaxis.
Objectives: To assess the frequency of acute exacerbation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in patients taking low dose azithromycin prophylaxis. Study Design: Cross Sectional study. Setting: Department of Medicine, Independent University Hospital, Faisalabad. Period: 01-07-2017 to 30-06-2018. Material & Methods: 100 patients having diagnosis of COPD according to the operational definition were selected from medical opd of hospital after consent of patients. All patients were given tablet azithromycin 250mg thrice weekly for 12 months, then these patients were followed up for episodes of exacerbations in one year. All patients were properly instructed to report in any change in their symptoms. Any episode of acute exacerbation was noted. There was no conflict of interest. Results: Frequency of acute exacerbation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease was seen in 70 out of 100(70%) patients taking low dose azithromycin prophylaxis. In female patients frequency of acute exacerbation was high as compared to male patients. i.e. 62.9% vs. 37.1%. Frequency of acute exacerbation was higher in patients whose duration of disease was longer. i.e. 7-10 years followed by patients whose duration of disease was 4-6 years (28.6%) and 1-3 years (25.7%). Presence of acute exacerbation was significantly associated with decline in lung functions. Highest frequency of acute exacerbation was seen in patients who had 3-4 episodes. Conclusion: Results of this study showed a high frequency of acute exacerbation of COPD even with the prophylaxis of low dose azithromycin. However literature reported effectiveness of low dose azithromycin for acute exacerbation in patients of COPD. So further study in the form of randomized trail is needed to prove the efficacy of azithromycin.