There are approximately 44 million cases of COPD worldwide. In developed countries, COPD is seen in late-middle and old age, usually after 45 years.
Occurrence in Europe
The frequency of clinically relevant COPD varies in European countries from 4–10% of the adult population.
Data on the frequency of COPD in Central and Eastern Europe are very limited.
Deaths from COPD
Approximately 200,000–300,000 people die each year in Europe because of COPD.
Data provided by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 1997 showed that COPD was the cause of death in 4.1% of men and 2.4% of women in Europe.
The cost of COPD
Among respiratory diseases, COPD is the leading cause of lost work days.
In the EU, approximately 41,300 lost work days per 100,000 people are due to COPD every year.
In Europe, productivity losses due to COPD amount to a total of €28.5 billion annually.
By 2020, COPD is likely to account for over 6 million deaths worldwide every year, making it the third leading cause of death.