Spirometric and anthropometric data are historically used as outcome measures in CF studies and clinical settings. Few tools are available to determine patient perceived symptoms and there is increasing interest in patient-reported outcomes. Dyspnea and cough are the most frequently reported symptoms and their changes are identified by patients as primary indicators of a respiratory exacerbation or its resolution. Given their prevalence and severity, there may be value in utilising tools that specifically measure the degree of cough and dyspnea in clinical practice. Aim: To describe the change of dyspnea and cough in CF patients during hospitalization. Methods: Dyspnea and cough of 33 CF adult in-patients (23 F, 32 ± 12 yrs, mean BMI 20.3 ± 2.7 and mean FEV1%pred 49.5 ± 19.9) were evaluated with Modified Medical Research Council (MRC) and Cough Visual Analogic Scale (VAS) respectively. Data were collected in patients admitted on November and December 2016. Descriptive and statistical analyses were conducted to detect possible changes at hospital discharge. Results: Patients described cough impact with a mean VAS score of 4.6/10 at admission, with a statistical significant improvement at the end of hospitalization (mean VAS score at discharge 1/10, p < 0.001). Almost the 50% of patients referred breathlessness MRC score ≥2/4 at hospital admission with a significant decrease at discharge (p = 0.001). A difference of one point is stated as the minimal clinical important difference and the 54.5% of subjects declared a reduction of dyspnea of at least 1. Conclusions: Our results suggest that the use of symptomatic standard scales such as MRC and Cough VAS could integrate instrumental evaluation and highlight the impact of CF disease in the quality of life. Both symptoms were severe at hospital admission and showed a statistical significant recover. Further studies are needed to identify tools that could be outcome markers of efficacy of a health treatment.
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