COPD: facts & figures

COPD in Minnesota:

COPD prevalence in Minnesota by age

Source: Minnesota BRFSS, 2014.

The prevalence of COPD rises with age. There is a lower prevalence of COPD in Minnesota than there is in the U.S. In 2014, 4.4% of Minnesotans reported being told that they had COPD, compared with 6.4% nationally.

COPD hospitalizations by age

Source: Minnesota Hospital Association, 2015.

Patients with severe COPD are short of breath during most activities and are admitted to the hospital more often than other people.

COPD hospitalizations increase with age. The highest COPD hospitalization rates are among all adults over age 65. Older people are more affected because COPD is a slowly progressive disease, meaning the symptoms get worse over time. COPD is very rare in younger people. 

COPD hospitalizations over time, by age and sex

Source: Minnesota Hospital Association. Solid lines indicate rates for males. Dashed lines indicate rates for females.

Under age 75, COPD hospitalization rates are comparable between males and females. Over age 75, hospitalization rates are higher in men than in women but this gap is getting smaller. Because COPD can develop over decades, the increase in rates among women between 2000 and 2010 reflects the increase in the number of women smoking over the past 50 years.

Deaths from COPD over time, by sex

Rates are age-adjusted. Source: Underlying Cause of Death on CDC WONDER Online Database, released 2016.

COPD is the fifth-leading cause of death in Minnesota. Death rates for COPD have declined for men but are unchanged for women. Although COPD death rates are higher among men than women, more women than men have died from COPD since 2005. This is because there are more women than men in the age groups most affected by COPD (adults over 65).

COPD mortality disparities by race/ethnicity

Rates are age-adjusted. Source: Underlying Cause of Death on CDC WONDER Online Database, released 2016.

There are striking disparities for COPD deaths by race and ethnicity, with high rates of death for American Indians in particular compared to people who are White, Black, Asian or Hispanic.