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Read about Mias PhD project!

23. February 2023

My name is Mia Solholt Godthaab Brath and I am in primary education for Pulmonary Medicine. Currently, I am on an exchange stay with Steno as part of my PhD. While I am at Steno, I will also be in their outpatient clinics at regular intervals and assist in supervising patients.

My PhD deals with the body composition of patients with COPD. In addition, I am taking a superstructure in nutrition research at the Nordic Nutrition Academy. The reason why I have embarked on this project is because patients with COPD are one of the largest and most comorbid patient groups found worldwide. Patients are especially at risk of pathological changes in body composition, where they lose muscle mass and gain more fat accumulation, which is not necessarily detected by regular exercise.

Therefore, I would like to investigate whether it is possible to use existing studies of patients such as Computer Tomography (CT) to potentially capture patients earlier in their disease course and start rehabilitation. This will be possible, as a number of CT scans are carried out on patients with COPD during their course of the disease, which contains much more information also about their body composition, which is unused. In this way, early detection can be carried out.

The problem is that there is currently no reference to keep the measurements of muscle and fat from the chest up against when CT scans with contrast. Therefore, I am working on partly creating a reference for Europeans with contrast CT of the chest that takes into account age, height and BMI, but at the same time I am also investigating whether Inuit should have their own reference based on existing contrast CT scans.

Yours sincerely,