European Respiratory Society Monograph, Vol. 24. 2003
Despite the general observation that any living organism will die if nutrients are not adequately provided, therapeutic management of weight loss and muscle wasting in patients with chronic respiratory disorders has gained interest only recently, since it was generally considered as a terminal progression in the disease process, and therefore, inevitable and irreversible. Epidemiological insights into the prevalence of depletion, the contribution of weight loss and muscle wasting to the morbidity and mortality, as well as recent insights into the pathogenesis of depletion, have challenged this clinical attitude.
The current issue of the European Respiratoy Monograph offers a complete overview of present insights into the metabolic, systemic and nutritional aspects in chronic respiratory disorders. Therefore, it contributes to the goal of the Monograph to give the clinician optimal tools for day-to-day clinical activity, in order to realise the different management goals in disabled COPD patients.