Emphysematous lesions and lung function in healthy smokers 60 years of age

Ulf Tylen, M. Boijsen, A. Ekberg-Jansson, B. Bake, C. G. Löedahl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


We aimed to study the occurrence of emphysematous lesions in symptom free smoking men of about 60 years of age and in a matching group of never-smoking men and the relationship between pulmonary changes at high resolution computed tomography (HRCT) and lung function tests. Our investigation included 57 smoking and 32 never-smoking healthy men from a randomized epidemiological study. HRCT was performed at full inspiration with a 1.5 mm slice thickness and a 3 cm inter-slice distance. Evaluation was made by two radiologists unaware of smoking history. Emphysematous lesions were scored visually. Pulmonary function tests were performed including spirometry and diffusion capacity test (D(L)CO). Emphysematous changes were demonstrated in 25 of 57 smokers but in only one never-smoker. D(L)CO/VA was the most sensitive test for early emphysematous lesions. It also correlated with radiographical scoring. Emphysematous lesions were evident in 44% of the healthy symptom free smokers. HRCT may reveal early emphysematous lesions in smokers before clinical symptoms have developed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)38-43
Number of pages6
JournalRespiratory Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Computed tomography
  • Pulmonary emphysema
  • Respiratory function test
  • Smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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