Table 1—

Summary of underlying causes of death reported for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease(COPD)

First author [ref.]Total sample sizeMean age yrsMean FEV1 L and/or % predMean follow-up yrsTotal deathsCauses of deathProportion of deaths %
Zielinski 21215660.72 L# (pre- or post-BD not stated)Not reported215Chronic respiratory failure38
Heart failure13
Pulmonary infection11
Pulmonary embolism10
Cardiac arrhythmia8
Lung cancer7
Myocardial infarction6
Garcia-Aymerich 233406936% (pre- or post-BD not stated)1.198Respiratory causes74
Cardiovascular causes12
Lung cancer5
Other cancer2
Waterhouse 24751641.4 L; 50% (post-BD)2.8103Respiratory49
Lung cancer11
Other cancer10
Keistinen 25272750–54Not reported8.5973Coronary ischemia, stroke and other circulatory diseases37
Lung cancer13
Other cancer8
Other pulmonary disease (including asthma)4
Vilkman 26223767Not reportedNot reported1070Coronary heart disease and other circulatory causes37
Lung cancer12
Other cancer8
Anthonisen 275887482.7 L; 75% (post-BD)5.0149Lung cancer38
Cardiovascular disease25
Anthonisen 35887482.7 L; 78% (post-BD)14.5731Lung cancer33
Cardiovascular disease (including coronary heart disease)22
Other cancer21
Respiratory causes other than lung cancer8
Other or unknown16
Celli 2862564–67+39–47% (post-BD)+2.3162Respiratory failure61
Myocardial infarction14
Lung cancer12
  • Data are presented as n or as a range, unless otherwise stated. FEV1: forced expiratory volume in one second; % pred: % predicted; BD: bronchodilator. #: measurement taken at a median of 10 months before death; : both studies report data from the Lung Health Study, but at 5-yr 27 and 14.5-yr 3 follow-up; +: range across three patient cohorts.