Severe COPD Prognosis

COPD Stage 4

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease  (COPD) is a progressive disease that typically increases in severity over time. Severe COPD, also caked COPD Stage 4 or end-stage COPD, is the most severe stage in the disease’s progression. When suffering from COPD Stage 4, it is helpful to know the severe COPD prognosis in order to manage the symptoms more effectively.

Lung Capacity in COPD Stage 4 

When a person has COPD stage 4, his or her lung capacity is significantly decreased. When measuring lung capacity, the forced expiratory volume (FEV1) is compared to the forced vital capacity (FVC), called the FEV1/FVC ratio.  A healthy person has a FEV1/FVC ratio of or around 80 percent. The lower the FEV1/FVC ratio, the more severe the disease. COPD Stage 4 is categorized by a FEV1 test score that is lower than 30 percent.

In order to best treat and maintain COPD, it is important to first understand the various symptoms and treatment options.

Symptoms of COPD Stage 4 are: 

-Chronic coughing

-Sputum: coughing up mucus

-Dyspnea: breathing discomfort

-Cyanosis: blueness of the lips or fingernail beds

-Shortness of breath

-Chest tightness

-Unintended weight loss

-Frequent respiratory infections

-Chronic respiratory failure

How Long Is Left On The Clock?

According to one case study, scientists found that people with COPD had a much increased chance of mortality than those who do not. Using the GOLD System, researchers kept track for years of patients with COPD. The results found that current or ongoing smokers have a shorter life expectancy than patients that quit. In addition to quitting smoking, there are treatment options that a person with COPD can take to be proactive in slowing down the decline in lung function.

COPD Treatment Options

For those who have been diagnosed with COPD, the main goals of treatment are: symptom relief, slow down decline in lung function, improve daily lung function, decrease number of acute episodes (aka COPD exacerbations) and improvement in overall quality of life. Many COPD sufferers use supplemental oxygen along with daily medications to manage symptoms. For those with more developed stages of COPD, more serious measures like a lung transplant or reduction might be an option. There is, however, a minimally invasive, alternative treatment that helps most lung disease sufferers. Stem cell therapy might help slow the development of lung disease and even improve it. Rather than managing symptoms like oxygen and medications, stem cell therapy harnesses your body’s natural healing abilities, essentially healing the lung tissue. While stem cell therapy is not a cure, it is an effective treatment that might provide lung disease sufferers with a much greater quality of life.

Of course, if you are looking for an alternative treatment for COPD, then the Lung Institute might be able to help! If you or someone you love would like know more about treatment options, feel free to contact one of our patient care coordinators today or call (800) 729-3065 today.

* All treatments performed at Lung Institute utilize autologous stem cells, meaning those derived from a patient's own body. No fetal or embryonic stem cells are utilized in Lung Institute's procedures. Lung Institute aims to improve patients' quality of life and help them breathe easier through the use of autologous stem cell therapy. To learn more about how stem cells work for lung disease, click here.

All claims made regarding the efficacy of Lung Institute's treatments as they pertain to pulmonary conditions are based solely on anecdotal support collected by Lung Institute. Individual conditions, treatment and outcomes may vary and are not necessarily indicative of future results. Testimonial participation is voluntary. Lung Institute does not pay for or script patient testimonials.

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As required by Texas state law, the Lung Institute Dallas Clinic has received Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval from MaGil IRB, now Chesapeake IRB, which is fully accredited by the Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Program (AAHRPP), for research protocols and stem cell procedures. The Lung Institute has implemented these IRB approved standards at all of its clinics nationwide. Approval indicates that we follow rigorous standards for ethics, quality, and protections for human research.