Non-cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis: A single-centre retrospective study in Johannesburg, South Africa

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G Titus
S Hassanali
C Feldman


Background. Bronchiectasis, once rarely encountered, appears to be increasing in prevalence in South Africa (SA) and globally. There is a lack of published data on non-cystic fibrosis (CF) bronchiectasis, specifically in low- to middle-income countries, despite the high rates of risk factors such as HIV, pulmonary tuberculosis, and other infections.

Objectives. Given this lack of data, to review the characteristics of adult patients with non-CF bronchiectasis at a tertiary academic hospital in Johannesburg, SA.

Methods. This was a single-centre, retrospective record review, including all cases of non-CF bronchiectasis that were in the records of the adult pulmonology clinic at Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital as of April 2017.

Results. There were 197 patients, with a slight predominance of males, and the patients were generally young. The HIV rate was higher than the national average (34.8% v. 13.7%), and the HIV-positive patients had a high TB prevalence (86.9%). Pseudomonas spp. were cultured from sputum in 15.3% of cases. Fewer than half of the cohort had the diagnosis of bronchiectasis confirmed by high-resolution chest tomography. Airway obstruction (forced expiratory volume in 1 second/forced vital capacity ratio <70%) was observed in 47.0% of patients. Treatment with a short-acting beta-2-agonist was prescribed in 62.9%, a long-acting beta-2-agonist in 43.6% and inhaled corticosteroids in 51.3%. Antibiotic therapy during exacerbations was used in 44.2%, mainly amoxycillin-clavulanate (66.7%).

Conclusion. While single centre and retrospective, this study adds to the data on non-CF bronchiectasis in sub-Saharan Africa and should encourage further research to increase our understanding of adult non-CF bronchiectasis in SA.


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Titus G, Hassanali S, Feldman C. Non-cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis: A single-centre retrospective study in Johannesburg, South Africa. Afr J Thoracic Crit Care Med [Internet]. 2023 Nov. 29 [cited 2024 Jun. 12];29(4):e1017. Available from:
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How to Cite

Titus G, Hassanali S, Feldman C. Non-cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis: A single-centre retrospective study in Johannesburg, South Africa. Afr J Thoracic Crit Care Med [Internet]. 2023 Nov. 29 [cited 2024 Jun. 12];29(4):e1017. Available from:


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