DOI: 10.3390/jpm14030296 ISSN: 2075-4426

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Mortality and Hospitalization during the COVID-19 Pandemic Compared with before the Pandemic: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Chiwon Ahn, Yeonkyung Park
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)

This study aimed to assess the impact of the pandemic on hospitalization and mortality rates among patients with acute exacerbation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (AECOPD). We conducted a systematic search across three medical databases for studies comparing the AECOPD mortality and hospitalization rates during the COVID-19 pandemic with those before the pandemic, up until December 2023. Using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses and Meta-analysis of Observational Studies in Epidemiology guidelines, we performed a meta-analysis with a random-effects model to pool odds ratios (ORs), 95% confidence intervals (CIs), and heterogeneity (I2). From 4689 records, 21 studies met our inclusion criteria. Our analysis revealed a significant increase in in-hospital mortality during the pandemic (pooled OR = 1.27, 95% CI = 1.17–1.39, I2 = 50%). Subgroup analysis highlighted a more pronounced mortality risk in single-center studies and smaller populations. Conversely, hospitalization rates for AECOPD significantly declined during the pandemic (pooled OR = 0.39, 95% CI = 0.18–0.85, I2 = 99%). The study demonstrates that during the COVID-19 pandemic, there was a substantial decrease in hospital admissions for AECOPD and an increase in in-hospital deaths. This shows that better healthcare plans and pandemic preparedness are needed to help people with chronic conditions.

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