News

Low physical activity linked to increased risk of death in people with COPD

Last Update 06/04/2021

A new study suggests that regular physical activity can increase the life expectancy of people with COPD.


A new study, published in the European Respiratory Journal, suggests that regular physical activity can increase the life expectancy of people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

Researchers studied data collected from 1,270 people with COPD and 8,734 without the condition living in Copenhagen, Denmark. These participants were part of a wider project, during which they answered a questionnaire and were physically assessed at regular points over several decades.

The researchers found that people with COPD who were physically active at the time of their first examination and then reported low physical activity at the follow-up were at an increased risk of death.

On the other hand, they found that there was no difference to the risk of death in people with COPD whose initial level of physical activity was low, followed by unchanged or increased rates of activity.

These findings support the importance of encouraging physical activity among people with COPD in the earliest stages of the disease.

Read the abstract of the journal article.

Read the public version of the ERS guidelines on pulmonary rehabilitation.

Sign up to our newsletter