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Lung India. 2019 Sep-Oct;36(5):417-421. doi: 10.4103/lungindia.lungindia_27_19.

Quadriceps strength in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

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Department of Physiology, B.J. Government Medical College; Department of Health and Biomedical Sciences, Symbiosis International (Deemed) University, Pune, Maharashtra, India.
Student of MTech Mechatronics, College of Engineering Pune, Pune, Maharashtra, India.
Department of Health and Biomedical Sciences, Symbiosis International (Deemed) University, Pune, Maharashtra, India.
Department of Physiology, B.J. Government Medical College, Pune, Maharashtra, India.



Skeletal muscle dysfunction is well known in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The muscle strength is altered in various muscles variedly. Lower-limb muscle strength is very important for walking distance. Reduced lower-limb strength can affect the physical quality of life.


The aim of the study was to assess and compare the quadriceps strength in COPD patients and age-matched healthy controls and to study the correlation between lung function parameters and the quadriceps strength in patients with COPD.


Thirty nonsmoker male patients; thirty nonsmoker female patients with COPD; and sixty age-, BMI-, and gender-matched healthy controls were studied. Quadriceps muscle strength was measured using a quadriceps dynamometer. Forced vital capacity (FVC), forced expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV1), FEF 25-75, and peak expiratory flow rate were measured using Helios 702 Spirometer. The quadriceps muscle strength between the two groups was compared using the unpaired Student's t-test. Correlations between FVC and FEV1with muscle strength were analyzed using the Pearson's coefficient.


The mean unilateral and bilateral quadriceps strength in both male and female COPD patients was significantly lesser than the healthy controls (P < 0.05). There was a significant positive correlation between muscle strength and FVC and muscle strength and FEV1in patients with COPD.


The study shows that there is quadriceps weakness in COPD patients, and pulmonary functions have a direct impact on skeletal muscle strength. Identifying those patients who have reduced strength will allow early interventions targeted at improving the quality of life of the patient.


Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; forced vital capacity; muscle strength; quadriceps

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