Anoro Ellipta (umeclidinium/vilanterol) is indicated as a maintenance bronchodilator treatment to relieve symptoms in adult patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). 1
Breathlessness is a cardinal symptom of COPD 7
Breathlessness (dyspnoea) is highly prevalent among patients with COPD, with approximately 72.5% of patients with COPD reporting it as a symptom to their physician, in one European study of 2,441 patients. 8
Lung function decline is greatest in the early stages of disease
Breathlessness is a common respiratory symptom of COPD that has a major impact on both quality of life and health outcomes in patients. 2 7 The decline in lung function in patients with COPD has been shown to occur at a considerably faster rate during the early stages of the disease, 3 and in many cases the symptoms of COPD do not appear until patients have lost approximately 50% of their lung function. 2 Therefore, early and effective intervention could help to prevent further lung function decline, improve patient quality of life and slow progression towards disability. 4 5 6
The effect of breathlessness on patients with COPD
Data show that breathlessness may correlate with heightened exacerbation rates, decreased health status and a decline in the health-related quality of life of patients. 9 A survey conducted by IPSOS Healthcare in April 2014 found that 86% of patients with COPD reported feeling frustrated, while 68% reported being fearful of the future due to their COPD symptoms. 10
“It takes me so long to just get dressed, because you’re stopping and starting, you have to keep sitting down and getting back the breathing, so it takes a long time. To get out by ten, I’m up at half past five.” 15
Economic impact of breathlessness
COPD is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide, and with this comes both an economic and social burden, resulting in an impact on healthcare budgets: 7
6% – the proportion of European health costs spent on respiratory disease 7
56% – the contribution of COPD to European respiratory healthcare costs 7
€38.6 billion – the annual cost of COPD in Europe 7
Symptoms of COPD can force patients or their careers to leave the workforce early
40% – the percentage of patients forced to stop working due to their COPD 11
£101 million – the estimated productivity loss from early retirement due to COPD 11
9% – the percentage of patients with severe COPD who feel able to continue to work 11
Impact of COPD on GP services
GP visits contribute significantly more towards COPD management costs compared with exacerbations or non- COPD hospitalisations, even among patients with frequent exacerbations. 9
|Cost per patient per year|
|MRC grade||No of patients||Exacerbations||Non-COPD hospitalisations||All cause GP interactions||Total|
COPD management and costs in a 12-month follow-up
Adapted from Punekar 2014.12
Patients reporting clinically significant dyspnoea MRC scores ≥3 use GP services significantly more frequently than patients with MRC scores ≤2. 13
Improving patients’ symptom control could improve the quality of life of patients and help to reduce COPD costs. 12
- Anoro Ellipta SmPC.
- Sutherland ER et al. N Engl J Med 2004; 350:2689– 2697.
- Decramer et al. Thorax 2010; 65:837–841.
- Csikesz NG et al. Int J Chron Obstruct Pulmon Dis 2014; 9:277–286.
- Price et al. Prim Care Resp J 2005; 14:285–293.
- Jones R et al. Prim Care Resp J 2011; 20:30–45.
- Global Strategy for the Diagnosis, Management and Prevention of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (GOLD) 2017.
- Kessler R et al. Eur Respir J 2011; 37:264–272.
- Punekar et al. Pulm Ther 2016; 2:59–72.
- GSK data on file: Breathlessness in COPD Patient Survey, IPSOS 2014.
- Fletcher et al. BMC Public Health 2011; 11:612– 625.
- Punekar et al. Int J Chron Obstruct Pulmon Dis 2014; 9:65–73.
- Mullerova et al. PLoS One 2014; 9:e85540.
- Avşar G, Kaşikçi M. Aust J Adv Nurs 2011; 28:46– 52.
- Gysels M, Higginson IJ. J Pain Symptom Manage 2010; 39:555–563.