Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) often has a profound effect upon the quality of life and mortality of the older adult. Despite numerous medical treatments, surgery may be considered for the symptomatic patient with medically-optimized, end-stage COPD. Bullectomy, lung volume reduction surgery (LVRS), and lung transplantation have all proven to be important surgical therapies. This article reviews the current state of these interventions, and the criteria when deciding on the best surgical option for a given patient.
Key words: emphysema, COPD, lung transplant, lung volume reduction surgery, bullectomy.