Purpose of review: This review summarizes recent research on chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) among older adults. Recent findings: Recent research on COPD and older adults addresses four key areas: diagnosis and screening, comorbidities, end-of-life care, and management. These key findings include the Rotterdam studys identification of the incidence rate of COPD in older adults being 9.2 per 1000 person-years; a new assessment of FEV1 cut-points associated with increased prevalence of respiratory symptoms and risk of death; development and validation of new mortality scales, the ADO (age, dyspnea, and airflow obstruction) index and the PILE score; older adults with COPD average 9 comorbidities, of which depression, cardiovascular diseases such as hypertension, and chronic renal failure are highly prevalent; nonrespiratory treatments such as proton pump inhibitors, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, and statins show promise in the management of COPD; and strength may be a protective factor for older adults with COPD. Summary: Findings suggest that more research on older adults and COPD suggest that aging is a determinant of the progression of disease and that management of this population requires different metrics and strategies. © 2011 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
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