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Thursday, December 12, 2013
COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease)
My father has been diagosed with severe Emphysema and they told him he only has 23% Lung cap. He will not stop smoking and does not exercise. How long can he live if he keeps going like this?
The natural history of COPD is variable from person to person. The lung capacity alone is not enough to be a good predictor of mortality. One of the best tools to predict risk of death from COPD is "the BODE index". This takes into account a person's weight, lung capacity (FEV1), shortness of breath level, and exercise tolerance (six-minute walk distance). I would suggest you try to attend a doctor's appointment with your Father and discuss where your father falls within the BODE index.
Gretchen Whitby, APRN
Nurse Practitioner of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University