Life expectancy : Hi I’m a 31 year old... - British Lung Foun...

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Life expectancy

Warrington31 profile image

Hi I’m a 31 year old male and I’m just looking for information as I’m finding it hard on the internet I haven’t as of yet been given the diagnosis of COPD but it’s highly likely that it is I’ve recently done a speromitaty test and my lung function is at 40% I’ve been given stronger inhalers in the hope that it’s asthma and I go back in 4 weeks time to see if there is any improvement with them... if there isn’t and it is COPD I would like to know what the life expectancy is for someone my age.. I think I would come under stage 3 as my function is so low


10 Replies

Hello Warrington31 . 👋

Welcome to the forum. I'm glad you found us. I doubt anyone here will be able to give you a number as to life expectancy. Really because every individual is different and the course of the disease varies from person to person. As people will tell you, there are many here who have one form of lung disease or another and are still very much alive and more importantly, living their lives to the fullest.

I was diagnosed with a life threatening lung disease and was told life expectancy was five years. I have just entered my fourth year and am still very much alive, as active as I can be and awaiting a lung transplant.

Lifestyle changes like eating healthy and exercise can go a long way in helping you live a good life even with disease. We all learn to adapt. If you are a smoker, please do consider stopping. Ask your doctor about pulmonary rehabilitation programs. These really help.

This is not the end, but a new phase in your life. Do come here often, we are a supportive and friendly group.

I hope you have a lovely day.

Cas xx 🙋🐕

No one can give you any idea about life expectancy. Even professionals if venturing an opinion are giving a rough guess at best. I was diagnosed stage 3 COPD in 2009 and like most people I would imagine, I googled for just that question and it said approx. 5 years. Well they got that wrong then. Every single person is different and we all have different lifestyles so there is no definitive answer to your question, I'm afraid. After all, you could be run over by a bus tomorrow .......... x

Welcome Warrington31,

As Caspiana and greatauntali have said no-one can give you any figure on life expectancy, we can only give personal experiences. Many here have lived with lung disease for many years. I was diagnosed with severe copd (stage 3) almost two years ago. I took up a healthy lifestyle, started exercising. Today I am still working full-time as a production engineer, on my feet all day and leading a very full and extremely busy life. I cannot run anymore, but then I will be 68 this year and have no real desire to run. I live up 3 flights of stairs and can carry a, 20 Kg, loaded shopping trolley up them. Walk 5 miles and basically am living a normal independent life. Having copd has had a profound affect on my life but I have learned to cope and manage the symptoms, a youngster like you should also be able to do the same.

If you smoke you should quit asap it is thing single best thing you can do to help yourself,

smoking will most certainly accelerate the progression of copd.

Do not worry if you do have copd, your life is not over. Wait for a proper diagnosis, come back and then we can advise you on what you will need to do. If it is a GP making the diagnosis then insist that you are referred to see a specialist who can then give you a CT scan to confirm the diagnosis. GPs are not trained in lung diseases. Good luck.

Hello Warrington31,

Please don't believe everything you read on the internet. I have bronchiectasis and bronchiolitis obliterans. BLF do some really good informative leaflets about various lung conditions. You would be better of reading them and they are free. I read the BFL booklet about bronchiectasis. It was great, very reassuring. I couldn't find one for my other lung problem so I turned to the internet. Oh no! According the internet I'm dead! Well I will be so soon I might not have time to finish thi.......

Oh! It's okay I'm still here. Yesterday I was telling a friend what I'd read about dying soon. She replied "There's sites that tell you hanging upside down drinking carrot juice daily will cure everything. " This of course is a fib but not much of one. I would take the five year death prognosis with a pinch of salt. Contact BLF. Make sure you eat healthy food, get fresh air when you can, gentle to moderate exercise when you can and enjoy life. Be the best you can xx

My mother had copd for about 25 years,it was only after she broke her hip and a lung collapsed during the op that caused her condition to deteriorate faster,but for that I have no doubt she'd still be around today.I have copd too,I was diagnosed around 6 years ago,stage 1,It took me a couple of years to quit smoking completely after I was diagnosed.I'm smoke free now over 2 years and except for an exacerbation of my copd a couple of months ago I've been fine.My copd is still only stage 1.I actually have more trouble with the arthritis I also have,it's this that limits me rather than the copd.So don't worry about things,try to live healthy and hopefully you'll be fine.Good luck.

Hi 👋 I wouldn’t worry about it, I have severe copd, and on oxygen, all I can say is, live for today, as yesterday has gone, and tomorrow may never come. Good luck 😉

BSA-3 profile image
BSA-3 in reply to oooodicky

Hi, I read on another H.U. forum the aphorism; " Today is today, yesterday is history and tomorrow is a mystery "! Quite liked that one, lol.

KevinD1878 profile image
KevinD1878 in reply to BSA-3

The way I heard it was : Yesterday is history; tomorrow's a mystery; today is a gift - and that's why they call it the present.

BSA-3 profile image
BSA-3 in reply to KevinD1878

You're right,lol. I wasn't sure if I'd remembered it correctly. 🤔😁


As others have said: how long is a piece of string. I got my initial diagnosis when I was 38, but I'd been struggling with shortage of breath for a long time before that (my emphysema is partly genetic). I'm coming up 71 this year. Obviously, since emphysema is progressive, I'm in a much worse state now, but still getting out there and enjoying life.

Be active, be healthy and live life to the full while you are able!


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