Patients with bronchiectasis often have impaired quality of life (QoL), which deteriorates with exacerbations. The aim of this study was to investigate changes in QoL and how these were influenced by changes in airway physiology and inflammation in patients with bronchiectasis before and after resolution of an exacerbation. Sputum induction and a QoL questionnaire were undertaken on the first day, day 14, and 4 weeks after completion of intravenous antibiotics (day 42). Eighteen patients (12 female) were recruited, median (IQ range) age of 54 (47–60) years. There was a trend towards an improvement in lung function from visit 1 to visit 2, but this was not statistically significant. C-reactive protein (CRP) [mean (SEM)] reduced between visit 1 and visit 2 [55.4 (21.5) vs 9.4 (3.1) mg/L, P = 0.03] but did not increase significantly on visit 3 [44.4 32.9) mg/L, P = 0.27]. The median (interquartile range) sputum cell count (×106 cells/g of sputum) decreased from visit 1 to visit 2 [21.6 (11.8–37.6)–13.3 (6.7–22.9) × 106 cells/g, respectively, P = 0.008] and increased from visit 2 to visit 3 [26.3 (14.1–33.6) × 106 cells/g, P = 0.03]. All solublemarkers of inflammation significantly reduced from visit 1 to visit 2 but increased on visit 3 with the exception of TNF-α. Regarding QoL, three of the four domains (dyspnoea, emotional, mastery) significantly improved from visit 1 to visit 2 but did not change between visit 2 and visit 3. The improvements in QoL scores could not be explained by the improvements in lung function or inflammatory markers.
- quality of life