Zhang Q, et al. COPD 2020.
ICS are anti-inflammatory agents which have been suggested to benefit people with worsening symptoms of COPD, by improving lung function, reducing exacerbation of disease, and enhancing overall quality of life. This systematic review and meta-analysis explored the association of the risk of pneumonia in COPD patients that were undergoing treatment using ICS alone or together with LABAs or LAMAs. PubMed, Cochrane Library and EMBASE were systematically searched through August 1, 2019; only double-blinded randomized controlled trials were eligible for this study. Eighteen randomized controlled trials were included. ICS treatment was linked to increased pneumonia incidence (RR, 1.47; 95% CI, 1.26-1.71; p < 0.001; I2 = 39.6%). Patients treated with salmeterol/fluticasone were more likely to have experience pneumonia-related adverse events than those treated using budesonide/formoterol or beclomethasone/formoterol. In subgroup analyses, pneumonia risk was found to be higher in the subgroups: >65 years old, lowest baseline forced expiratory volume in the first second of expiration (FEV1) < 50% of the predicted value, highest ICS dose, and long duration of ICS use. Furthermore, we compared fluticasone propionate with fluticasone furoate and determined that pneumonia incidence was higher in the former group and pneumonia incidence rose as doses rose in these two groups. However, no difference was observed between the budesonide and beclomethasone groups. ICS treatment was linked to an elevated pneumonia risk, different kinds of ICS lead to different rates of pneumonia.