Association between weight loss and mortality in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis

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Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a chronic, progressive interstitial lung disease that has no cure. Many current research efforts center on diagnostic and therapeutic modalities for IPF while other risk factors affecting disease pathogenesis receive less attention. Emerging data support the clinical importance of weight loss in patients with IPF. However, factors associated with weight loss and the impact of weight loss on mortality remain incompletely explored.


Explore the association between weight loss and transplant-free survival in patients with IPF and identify clinical variables associated with weight loss in this population.


Kaplan–Meier and Cox proportional hazard regression analyses were generated and stratified by weight loss or use of antifibrotic medications. Conditional logistic regression was used to evaluate for factors associated with weight loss.


There was a significant increase in mortality in patients who lost ≥ 5% of their body weight loss (HR 2.21, [1.29, 4.43] p = .021). The use of supplemental oxygen (adjusted OR 13.16), and ≥ 200 mL loss of FVC over 1 year (adjusted OR 5.44) were both associated with a ≥ 5% weight loss in the year following a diagnosis of IPF. The use of antifibrotic medication did not significantly change median transplant-free survival in patients who lost more than ≥ 5% of their body mass.


Weight loss over the first year following a diagnosis of IPF is strongly associated with decreased transplant-free survival. More research is needed to determine the mechanisms surrounding weight loss in patients with IPF.


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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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