Can a chronic lung problem lead to excessive weight loss?
Q: I am a 57 years old male. I have been suffering from COPD (common obstructive pulmonary disorder) for the past 8 years. This July I had a severe attack of breathlessness and I had to be admitted in Apollo hospital for 2 weeks. I recovered well enough but I lost around 22 kgs during this and now I weigh only 36 kgs (I used to weigh 58 Kgs). I would like to know whether this kind of weight loss is normal for COPD patients? All my test results show normal results only.
A:It is extremely unlikely that your weight loss of this degree was due to COPD. Rarely a severe infection and respiratory failure needing mechanical ventilation and a long ICU stay can lead to severe catabolism causing severe weight loss but that happens when patient goes through a life threatening situation. If not then other causes of severe weight loss must be looked for.