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BACKGROUND: The recent epidemiological and experimental evidence suggest possible antioxidant effect of carbocysteine in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
AIM: To assess efficacy and tolerability of carbocysteine in the management of stable COPD.
METHODS: We performed an observational, non-randomized, open study (a real life study) including 87 patients with stable COPD (group B and D by combined COPD assessment) divided in two groups, examined group (EG) and control group (CG). All participants were treated with the regular treatment of the stable disease, but in the participants of the EG carbocysteine 1,500 mg daily was added to their regular treatment during the period of two months. The study protocol included completion of the COPD Assessment Test (CAT) and spirometric measurements at initial visit and at the end of the mentioned period.
RESULTS: We found significantly lower mean value of the overall CAT score in the EG at the end of the study as compared to its mean value registered at initial visit (26.9 vs. 24.3; P = 0.007). In regard to certain CAT items, we found significantly lower values of the mean scores related to cough phlegm and sleep disturbances as compared to their mean scores at initial visit. In addition, the mean values of the overall CAT scores at initial visit and at the end of the study in controls were similar. In EG we found significantly higher mean value of the MEF 25-75 at the end of the study as compared to its mean value registered at initial visit (59.3% vs. 67.2%; P = 0.003). There was no significant difference in the mean values of other spirometric parameters at the end of the study as compared to their mean values at initial visit. In controls we registered similar values of all measured spirometric parameters at the end of the study as compared to their values registered at initial visit. Mild gastrointestinal manifestations were registered in 13.3% of the participants of the EG during the examined period.CONCLUSION: Our findings indicate positive effects of carbocysteine regarding the symptoms and lung function, as well as its good tolerability in the patients with stable COPD.
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