The Comorbidity of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and Peripheral Artery Disease – A Systematic Review

The comorbidity of peripheral arterial disease (PAD) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is obvious from a clinical point of view, especially as smoking is an important risk factor for both. Another factor connecting these two clinical conditions is chronic inflammation, which plays a crucial role in their pathophysiology. The aim of this study was to present the prevalence of COPD in patients with PAD, as well as the prevalence of PAD in COPD patients confirmed in all patients by two reliable methods: spirometry and ankle-brachial index (ABI), respectively. The MEDLINE, EMBASE, and Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews were searched to identify the potentially eligible publications from the previous 10 years. The published characteristics of different PAD and COPD populations were analyzed. A database search identified 894 records. Reliable criteria of both COPD and PAD diagnosis were used only in seven publications. The prevalence of PAD among patients with COPD ranged from 8.5 to 81.4%. The severity of the disease and the exclusion of nonsmokers or symptomatic patients from the analyses were important factors affecting this parameter. The prevalence of COPD in patients with PAD was measured reliably only in one study and assessed as 27.2%. The comorbidity of COPD and PAD is a relatively common occurrence. There are very few publications addressing this issue based on reliable diagnostic criteria, especially in the field of PAD. In the case of COPD and PAD patients, spirometry and ABI measurements are worth considering as noninvasive screening tests for COPD and PAD, respectively.