What is the Life Expectancy of Advanced COPD?

How long you can live with COPD depends on many factors. Some researchers recently used epidemiological data to estimate life expectancy by stage of COPD.

They included that healthy 65-year-old men with stage I COPD have life expectancy ranging from 14 to 18 years. However, it depends on whether the person is a current smoker, former smoker or never smoked. For otherwise healthy 65-year-old women with stage I COPD have life expectancy ranging from 17.2 to 20.5 years.

For stage 2, the calculated COPD life expectancy ranges from 12.1 years (current smokers) to 17.1 years (never a smoker) in men, with 15.2 to 19.3 years in women.

For stage 3 or 4 COPD, the calculated advanced COPD life expectancy is from 8.5 to 16.5 years in men, and 11.3 to 18.4 years in women. Keep in mind that these numbers are for men and women who’d already reached the age of 65. They might not be accurate for someone who has diagnosed with COPD in their 50s or early 60s.

What’s more, doctors usually make predictions regarding life expectancy when they incorporate additional information related to a person’s health. The most popular model which is known as BODE assigns points based on FEV1 (the amount of air that can be forcibly exhaled from the lungs in the first second of a forced exhalation), body mass index, the distance a person can walk in six minutes, and how short of breath the person usually feels. Worse symptoms correspond to a higher score, with the maximum possible score being 10. This score corresponds to the possibility that a person will live four years or more.

Someone who scores 0-2 points has an 80 percent likelihood of living four years or more. People who scores 3-4 points have life expectancy of four years or more with the chance of 67 percent. A score of 5-6 implies a 57 percent likelihood, and a score of 7-8 points suggests an 18 percent likelihood of living four years or more. That means the advanced acute exacerbation life expectancy is four years or more with the change of 18 percent.

In summary, for those with mild COPD, life expectancy is driven by age, other illness and whether the person is a current smoker. For those who are hospitalized for a COPD exacerbation, there’s some chance of dying during the hospitalization, and a fair chance of dying in the one to two years after hospitalization.

* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.