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Treating severe respiratory disease at home

A trial, led by King’s College London, is using a non-invasive ventilation at home to treat severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which causes an array of symptoms, from difficulty breathing to psychological distress. There are currently poor outcomes with limited treatment options available for patients with the condition.

However, this new method looks set to change clinical practice which currently relies on standard home oxygen therapy.

Researchers led by Professor Nicholas Hart and working together with the team at the Lane Fox Clinical Respiratory Physiology Research Centre at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, found that patients treated with this method had:

  • improved 12 month admission free survival
  • reduced 28-day readmission
  • improved gas exchange
  • reduced exacerbation frequency
  • enhanced quality of life

The team believes this could hold a number of benefits, helping patients avoid re-admittance to hospital, preserving lung function and quality of life, as well as providing cost savings. Data from the study is now part of a clinical pathway in the Lane Fox Respiratory Service.

The concept for the trial came from the Respiratory Global Medical Excellence Cluster meeting hosted at King’s College London.

The study is part of King’s Health Partners Allergy, Respiratory, Critical Care, Anaesthetics and Pain Clinical Academic Group, which provides a children and adults allergy and immunology service; diagnostic, treatment and continuing care services for respiratory disorders.