A study published in the International Journal of Clinical Practice sought to investigate the relationship between back pain and thoracic vertebral deformities and arthropathy in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

In this retrospective review, researchers assessed thoracic computed tomography and pulmonary function tests (PFTs) between July 2019 and February 2020. The population of interest were divided into two groups: the COPD (n=64) and control groups (n=101), according to the PFT results.

According to the results, pain was detected in 43.7% of the patients with COPD and 20.9% of the controls. The researchers observed that patients with COPD had markedly higher rates of costotransverse, intervertebral, facet joint arthropathy and osteoporosis compared with the control group (P<0.001). The analyses showed that the presence of a vertebral deformity (odds ratio [OR]=4.42, 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.26-8.63, P<0.001), facet joint arthropathy (OR=3.6, 95% CI 2.83-4.58, P<0.001) and costotransverse arthropathy (OR=2.20, 95% CI 1.47-2.77, P<0.001) were all linked with back pain. Although a strong positive correlation was found between the Spinal Deformity Index and pain scores, a moderate negative correlation was found between the percentage of forced expiratory volume (FEV1%) and pain scores, the researchers noted.

The researchers added, “Additional studies are required to clarify the relationships of back pain with musculoskeletal system diseases, including cervical and lumbar spine arthropathy and vertebral deformities.”

Keywords: arthropathy, back pain, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, osteoporosis, thoracic vertebrae, vertebral deformity

Link: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34610196/