In 2022, over 3 million people died of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and the global burden of the disease is expected to increase over the coming decades. Recommendations for the treatment and management of patients with COPD are published by the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease, and updated annually with scientific evidence-based recommendations. The 2023 updates, published in November 2022, contain key changes to recommendations for diagnosis and treatment of COPD that are anticipated to have a significant impact on clinical practice for patients with COPD. Updates to how COPD is defined and diagnosed, including the expansion of contributing factors beyond tobacco use, have the potential to lead to the diagnosis of more patients and to allow for the implementation of early interventions for patients during early stages of the disease. Simplification of the treatment algorithms, and placement of triple therapy within these algorithms, will support clinicians in providing appropriate, timely treatment for patients with COPD with a focus on reducing the risk of future exacerbations. Finally, recognition of mortality reduction as a treatment goal in COPD supports an increase in the use of triple therapy, the only pharmacological intervention that has been demonstrated to improve survival for patients with COPD. Although further guidance and clarification are needed in some areas, such as use of blood eosinophil counts in guiding treatment decisions and implementation of treatment protocols following hospitalizations, recent updates to the GOLD recommendations will support clinicians in addressing current gaps in patient care. Clinicians should utilize these recommendations to drive the early diagnosis of patients with COPD, the identification of exacerbations, and the selection of appropriate, timely treatments for patients.
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Tamondong-Lachica, Diana R.; Skolnik, Neil; Hurst, John R.; Marchetti, Nathaniel; Rabe, Adrian Paul J.; Montes de Oca, Maria; and Celli, Bartolome R., "GOLD 2023 Update: Implications for Clinical Practice" (2023). Abington Jefferson Health Papers. Paper 83.