Prognosis

Morbidity and mortality among people with COPD occurs most often in the context of exacerbations. A study identified an approximately 50% 5-year mortality following hospitalisation for COPD exacerbation.[219] Re-hospitalisation and/or mortality have been associated with lower FEV1, higher PaCO2, lower PaO2, lower body mass index, older age, comorbidities, and low physical activity levels.[220][221][222][223][224][225][226] The multidimensional CODEX (comorbidity, obstruction, dyspnoea, previous severe exacerbations) index can predict readmission and survival at 3 months and 1 year after hospitalisation for COPD exacerbation.[227]

Acute exacerbations range from very mild to severe and life-threatening.

Patients who have had a significant exacerbation of COPD may not always recover back to their pre-illness functional status. Pulmonary rehabilitation may be required to improve exercise tolerance, physical ability, and quality of life after discharge. 

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