A paper published in the latest issue of CDC’s MMWR reports findings from a study of cases of adults with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease who have never smoked, with the three authors from NIOSH’s Respiratory Health Division in Morgantown, W.Va., concluding that workplace exposures likely contribute to much of their disease. The authors are Girija Syamlal, MBB; Brent Doney, Ph.D.; and Jacek M. Mazurek, M.D.
An estimated 24 percent of adults with COPD have never smoked, they report. During 2013–2017, an estimated 2.4 million U.S. working adults age 18 or older who never smoked had COPD, and the highest COPD prevalences among persons who never smoked were in the information (3.3 percent) and mining (3.1 percent) industries and office and administrative support occupation workers (3.3 percent). Women had higher COPD prevalences than men.