Background: Multiple studies have shown that patients with severe emphysema can significantly benefit from bronchoscopic lung volume reduction endobronchial valve (EBV) treatment up to 1 year after treatment. However, hardly any data exist on longer term follow-up, especially on quality of life. Our aim was to investigate long-term follow-up after EBV treatment up to 3 years including quality of life in a real-life routine clinical setting.
Methods: We retrospectively included patients who underwent EBV treatment in our hospital in the Netherlands at least 3 years prior. Patients were invited for annual visits to our hospital, and spirometry, body plethysmography, 6-min walk distance (6MWD) test and St George’s Respiratory Questionnaire (SGRQ) were performed during these visits.
Results: At 1-, 2-and 3-year follow-up, data were available from 189, 146 and 112 patients, respectively. Forced expiratory volume in 1 s, residual volume and SGRQ total score significantly improved up to 3 years after treatment compared with baseline, and 6MWD up to 2 years after treatment. In general, the magnitude of improvements gradually decreased over time.
Conclusions: Our results show that patients can benefit at least up to 3 years after EBV treatment. For the first time we found that patients can also benefit in terms of quality of life in the long term, which is an important outcome for this group of patients with end-stage COPD.