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Table 1 Main Characteristics of Patients with Cardiac Asthma and Classical CPE

From: Cardiac asthma in elderly patients: incidence, clinical presentation and outcome

Characteristics Classical CPE Cardiac asthma
  N = 137 N = 75
Demographic data
Age (years) 82 ± 9 83 ± 8
Male 62 (45%) 40 (53%)
Past medical history
Tobacco user > 20 pack/year 47 (34%) 44 (59%)*
Diabetes mellitus 32 (23%) 17 (23%)
Hypertension 125 (91%) 62 (83%)
COPD 22 (16%) 35 (47%)*
Asthma 8 (6%) 6 (8%)
Venous thrombo-embolic disease 7 (5%) 7 (9%)
Heart failure 57 (42%) 27 (36%)
Ischemic cardiac disease 57 (42%) 34 (45%)
Peripheral arterial disease 14 (10%) 18 (24%)*
Cerebrovascular disease 21 (15%) 14 (19%)
Previous medications
Beta-blockers 27 (20 %) 17 (23%)
Diuretics 86 (63%) 48 (64%)
Nitrates 63 (46%) 24 (32%)
ACE inhibitors 64 (47%) 27 (36%)
Inhaled bronchodilators 19 (14%) 36 (48%)*
Home oxygen 3 (2%) 12 (16%)*
Symptoms and physical exam at admission
Heart rate (/min) 93 ± 21 93 ± 21
Ventilatory rate (/min) 29 ± 6 29 ± 6
Systolic arterial pressure (mmHg) 144 ± 32 155 ± 30
Diastolic arterial pressure (mmHg) 78 ± 18 82 ± 20
Clinical signs of acute ventilatory failure 116 (85%) 58 (78%)
Crackles with pulmonary auscultation 121 (88%) 52 (69%)*
Signs of RV failure 93 (68%) 45 (60%)
Arterial blood gas
pH 7.43 ± 0.06 7.38 ± 0.08*
pH < 7.35 11 (8%) 20 (27%)*
PaCO2 (mmHg) 41 ± 11 47 ± 15*
PaCO2 ≥ 45 mmHg 31 (23%) 32 (42%)*
PaO2 (mmHg) 67 ± 25 67 ± 18
Bicarbonates (mmol/L) 26 ± 5 27 ± 6
Biological analysis
Creatinine clearance (mL/min) 40 (30–58) 44 (31–57)
Treatments received in the emergency room
Oxygen 133 (97%) 74 (99%)
Diuretics 89 (65%) 52 (69%)
Vasodilators 26 (19%) 19 (25%)
Nebulized β2-Agonist 1 (1%) 29 (39%)*
Nebulized Ipratropium Bromide 4 (3%) 19 (25%)*
  1. Data are mean ± SD, median [interquartile 25–75%], or number of patients (percentage) or extremes. CPE: cardiogenic pulmonary edema; COPD: chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. ACE inhibitors denotes angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors or angiotensin-receptor blockers; RV: right ventricular signs including jugular venous pressure or abdominal jugular reflux or lower-extremity edema; signs of acute ventilatory failure included: orthopnea, abdominal respiration, use of accessory muscles; PaO2: partial oxygen pressure; SaO2: arterial oxygen saturation; PaCO2: partial carbon dioxide pressure; SpO2: peripheral oxygen saturation; Creatinine clearance was estimated using the Cockcroft formula; nebulized β2-agonists included terbutaline or salbutamol administration. *p < 0.05.