For the purpose of the statistical facts presented here, only emphysema and chronic bronchitis are included in the figures and estimates.
When you think about the number or people also affected by asthma, as well as the over 200 or more restrictive lung diseases on record, these figures are, indeed, very frightening and overwhelming.
See also NIH Research
Funding for 2010 - 2012
Some Alarming Statistics (for 2000 - 2002)
World Wide Information
The World Health Organization (WHO)
estimates that COPD as a single cause of death shares 4th and 5th places
with HIV/AIDS (after coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disease and
acute respiratory infection).
The WHO estimates that in 2000, 2.74
million people died of COPD worldwide.
In 1990, a study by the World Bank and WHO
ranked COPD 12th as a burden of disease; by 2020, it is estimated that
COPD will be ranked 5th.
According to the WHO, passive smoking
carries serious risks, especially for children and those chronically
exposed. The WHO estimates that passive smoking is associated with a 10 to
43 percent increase in risk of COPD in adults.
Although cigarette smoking is the primary
cause of COPD, the WHO estimates that there are 400,000 deaths per year
from exposure to biomass fuels.
In Algeria, the prevalence of tuberculosis
and acute respiratory infection has decreased since 1965, but an increase
in chronic respiratory diseases (asthma and COPD) has been observed in the
COPD is estimated to be 6.2 percent in 11
Asian countries surveyed by the Asian Pacific Society of Respiratory
The use of biomass fuels, especially in the
rural areas, contributes towards a higher prevalence of COPD in some of
these countries and suggests that COPD may be significantly greater in
this region of the world than previously estimated.
In China, where it is estimated that over
50 percent of the men smoke, chronic respiratory diseases are the 4th
leading cause of death in large urban areas, but the first leading cause
of death in rural areas.
In China, smoking rates among women remain
low (estimated at 6 percent), although the prevalence of COPD in men and
women is about the same. This points to the importance of risk factors
other than smoking as a cause for COPD in Chinese women.
In Malaysia, respiratory illness is the
primary cause of visits to health clinics and outpatient hospital clinics.
It is estimated that 50 percent of the male population smokes, with higher
rates in the rural areas than the urban areas.
Unites States Information
COPD is the third leading cause of death
in the U.S.
(It was originally projected to be the third leading cause of death
for both males and females by the year 2020. - The Centers for Disease
Control (CDC) and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS)
released a report on Dec 10, 2010, "Deaths: Preliminary Data for 2008,"
confirming that Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) became the
third leading cause of death in the U.S. for 2008.)
The NHBLI reports 12.1 million adults 25
and older were diagnosed in 2001.
It is estimated that there may currently be
16 million people in the United States currently diagnosed with COPD.
It is estimated that there may be as many
as an additional 14 million or more in the United States still
undiagnosed, as they are in the beginning stages and have little to
minimal symptoms and have not sought health care yet.
Men are 7 times more likely to be diagnosed
with emphysema then women, though the prevalence in women is on a steady
increase and this number is lowering with each year
People over the age of 50 are more likely
to be considered disabled, however, the damage started years before
About 1.5 million emergency department visits by adults 25
and older were made for COPD in 2000.
More emergency department visits for COPD were made by
adult females than adult males (898,000 vs. 651,000).
About 726,000 hospitalizations for COPD occurred in 2000.
More females than males were hospitalized for COPD (404,000 vs. 322,000).
The total estimated cost of COPD in 2002 was $32.1
$18 billion were direct costs
$14.1 billion were indirect costs
NOTE: Prior estimates place the that the total cost of
managing COPD in 2000 had increased to approximately 30 billion dollars.
Smokers are 10 to 15 times more likely to be disabled by emphysema then
According to the
Center for Disease Control
(CDC), there were
124,816 deaths in the US in 2002
It is the only major disease with an
increasing death rate, rising 16%
|Number of Deaths
|NIH Allocation for research per death
Ref: Conditions by Death”
National Institutes of Health, “Estimates of Funding for Various Diseases,
Conditions, Research Areas,” March
8, 2005, at
Also, Cary P.
Gross, M.D., Gerard F. Anderson, Ph.D., and Neil R.
Powe, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A., “The Relation Between Funding by the
National Institutes of Health and the Burden of Disease,” N
Engl J Med 1999;340:1881-1887 at
Older Data included for evaluation
Between 1979 and 1995, the number of
individuals with COPD in the United States increased relatively steadily
from 7.5 million to 14.5 million persons. -- almost doubling in 25 years
Between 1985 and 1995, the number of
physician visits for COPD in the United States increased from 9.3 million
to 16 million.
The number of hospitalizations for COPD in
1995 was estimated to be 500,000. In the United States in 1993, 28 percent
of men and 23 percent of women smoked.
The rates of cigarette smoking were higher
among black (33 percent) than white men (27 percent), but similar in black
and white women (21 percent and 23 percent, respectively).
In the United States, it is estimated that
5 to 7 percent of adults current or former smokers have moderate
reductions in lung function and 3 to 5 percent have severe reductions.
These percentages increase with increasing age of the population.
COPD is currently the 4th leading cause of
death in the United States for those between the ages of 65-84.
COPD is currently the 5th leading cause of
death in the United States for ages 45-64 and 85 and older.
Mortality has increased 22% in the last
More than 100,000 American's died in 1997
It is estimated that the total cost of
managing COPD in 1998, physicians, medications, hospital and nursing care,
etc., exceeded 15 billion dollars in the United States.
A very detailed map of the United States showing the prevalence of COPD in the United States and incidence and mortality rates by states can be found at: http://www.copdinamerica.org/map.html
The information presented here was gathered from a variety of sources deemed fairly accurate. To research this information further, please visit the following web sites: