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NPJ Prim Care Respir Med. 2015 Jul 23;25:15048. doi: 10.1038/npjpcrm.2015.48.

Predictors of poor-quality spirometry in two cohorts of older adults in Russia and Belgium: a cross-sectional study.

Author information

Institute of Health and Society, Université Catholique de Louvain, Brussels, Belgium.
Department of Family Medicine, North-Western State Medical University, St Petersburg, Russia.
1] Institute of Health and Society, Université Catholique de Louvain, Brussels, Belgium [2] Department of Public Health and Primary Care, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Leuven, Belgium.



Spirometry is an important test for the diagnosis of respiratory diseases, yet it is underused especially in older adults. Several predictors of good-quality spirometry in this age group have been reported, based mainly on in/outpatients of geriatric and/or respiratory units.


This study aims to assess predictors of poor-quality spirometry in community-dwelling older adults from two primary care cohorts in Russia and Belgium.


Spirograms from two population-based cohort studies in Russia (CRYSTAL) and Belgium (BELFRAIL) were assessed in accordance with the American Thoracic Society/European Respiratory Society (ATS/ERS) acceptability and repeatability criteria and grouped into good and poor quality. Multivariable analysis assessed the association of poor-quality spirometry with socio-demographics, functional dependency, physical and mental functioning and co-morbidities.


In all, 43.3% of the 522 BELFRAIL participants (84.71 ± 3.67 years old) and 57.7% of the 605 CRYSTAL participants (75.11 ± 5.97 years old) achieved all ATS/ERS acceptability and repeatability criteria. In both cohorts, those with poor-quality spirometry had lower cognitive function (mini-mental state examination (MMSE) ⩽ 24). After adjustment in multivariable analysis, MMSE ⩽ 24 had an odds ratio for poor-quality spirometry of 1.33 (95% CI = 0.78-2.28) in the BELFRAIL and 1.30 (95% CI = 0.88-1.91) in the CRYSTAL cohort.


In community-dwelling older adults, including those over 80 years old, impaired cognition measured by the MMSE may not be an independent predictor of poor-quality spirometry. Further research is needed in this area, and spirometry should be used more often in older adults in primary care.

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