A new study in Thorax makes a further contribution to understanding how frequently bronchiectasis may complicate COPD. This study Suggests that the frequency of bronchiectasis in patients without a diagnosis of COPD is around 20%, and is not statistically significantly increased in those who went on to develop COPD, detected as COPD hospitalisations or death. Although the study has some limitations, it is interesting as it suggests that previous estimates of bronchiectasis frequency may have been an overestimate, and that the presence of bronchiectasis may not have such a poor prognosis as suggested by some studies. This is an area requiring further research.

Incidental findings on chest CT imaging are associated with increased COPD exacerbations and mortality. Jairam PM, van der Graaf Y, Lammers JW, Mali WP, de Jong PA; PROVIDI Study group. Thorax. 2015 May 29. pii: thoraxjnl-2014-206160. doi: 10.1136/thoraxjnl-2014-206160.