Year of Publication



Public Health

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (M.P.H.)

Committee Chair

David Mannino, MD

Committee Member

Lorie Chesnut, DrPH, MPH

Committee Member

Steven Browning, PhD



The objective of this study is to examine associations between Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) prevalence in Kentucky and measures of health-related quality of life (HRQOL) using a large population-based sample.


Data from the 2013 Kentucky Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) was used to calculate age-adjusted prevalence of COPD among various population subgroups (N=10,958). Multivariable logistic regression models were used to estimate adjusted odds ratios for COPD and HRQOL measures.


In 2013, the age-adjusted prevalence of self-reported COPD among Kentucky adults aged ≥18 years was 10.3% (standard error [SE], ±0.4; 95% CI, 9.5 – 11.2). Kentucky adults with COPD were more likely to report fair/poor general health (AOR, 2.81; 95% CI, 2.14 – 3.69), or frequent physical distress (AOR, 2.58; 95% CI, 1.94 – 3.42), or frequent mental distress (AOR, 1.51; 95% CI, 1.12 – 2.04), or frequent activity limitations (AOR, 2.34; 95% CI, 1.71 – 3.22), compared with adults who do not have COPD.


Significant variations in age-adjusted prevalence of COPD exists among various sociodemographic groups in Kentucky. Adults with COPD reported poorer HRQOL outcomes compared to adults without COPD. These findings, together with high prevalence of tobacco use statewide, suggest that preventive efforts that target smoking cessation could help reduce prevalence and impact of COPD.

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