According to a study published in Arthritis Care & Research, patients with rheumatoid arthritis have a greater risk of developing COPD, Medical News Today reports.

Patients with rheumatoid arthritis had a 47% higher risk of being hospitalized with COPD than the general population.

As rheumatoid arthritis is a prolonged, inflammatory condition, researchers wondered whether it might make people who have it more likely to develop COPD.

To investigate further, the team looked at data on the population of British Columbia, comparing records on 24,625 patients diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis between 1996 and 2006 with 25,396 randomly selected, matched individuals from the general population (the controls).