Comprehensive Lung Function Assessment Does not Allow to Infer Response to Pulmonary Rehabilitation in Patients with COPD

Ingrid M. L. Augustin*, Erniel E. M. Wouters, Sarah Houben-Wilke, Swetlana Gaffron, Daisy J. A. Janssen, Frits M. E. Franssen, Martijn A. Spruit

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The degree of lung function is frequently used as referral criterion for pulmonary rehabilitation. The efficacy of pulmonary rehabilitation was assessed in 518 chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patients, after clustering based on a comprehensive pre-rehabilitation lung function assessment. Mean improvements in dyspnea, exercise performance, health status, mood status and problematic activities of daily life after pulmonary rehabilitation were mostly comparable between the seven clusters, despite significant differences in the degree of lung function. The current study demonstrates no significant relationship between the seven lung-function-based clusters and response to pulmonary rehabilitation. Therefore, baseline lung function cannot be used to identify those who will respond well to pulmonary rehabilitation, and moreover, cannot be used as a criterion for referral to pulmonary rehabilitation in patients with COPD.

Original languageEnglish
Article number27
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Clinical Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2019


  • pulmonary rehabilitation
  • COPD
  • response

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