Current Geriatrics Reports

, Volume 7, Issue 3, pp 181–189 | Cite as

Tailoring Treatment in Obstructive Lung Disease: Asthma, COPD, Asthma/COPD Overlap and Eosinophilic COPD

  • Joseph Walsh
  • Andrew ScottEmail author
  • Robert Rutherford
Pulmonology and Respiratory Care (D Breen, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Pulmonology and Respiratory Care


Obstructive lung disease exacts a huge global health burden with a high prevalence of both asthma and COPD in elderly patients.

Purpose of Review

This review is to update the general and elderly care physician on diagnosis and management of COPD and asthma and the recently established disease asthma/COPD overlap (ACO) and the particular challenges treating obstructive lung disease in elderly patients.

Recent Findings

COPD pharmacology has changed considerably in the last decade with a dramatic increase in the utility of single and dual long-acting bronchodilators both for symptom and exacerbation attenuation. The emergence of ACO and the COPD phenotype eosinophilic COPD also appear to require nuanced therapeutic approaches. There is also a strong emphasis now on screening and treating comorbid conditions in COPD. In asthma the emergence of tailored therapy for different severe asthma phenotypes is also discussed.


Obstructive lung diseases are very common in elderly patients and both diagnosis and treatment of these conditions is more challenging than in younger patients.


Asthma COPD Exacerbation Asthma/COPD overlap Eosinophilic COPD 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Robert Rutherford, Andrew Scott and Joseph Walsh declare no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Respiratory MedicineUniversity Hospital GalwayGalwayIreland

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