BODE Index Calculator

Created by Joanna Michałowska, PhD candidate
Reviewed by Bogna Szyk and Jack Bowater
Last updated: Feb 15, 2022

The BODE Index calculator predicts the survival rate of patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). It uses four different variables to predict the risk of death. Check the article below to find more information on the BODE score and its interpretation.

If you are interested in other calculators related to the respiratory system, check our lung capacity, peak flow, and oxygenation index calculators.

We try our best to make our Omni Calculators as precise and reliable as possible. However, this tool can never replace professional medical advice.

BODE Index for COPD prognosis

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), together with diabetes and cardiovascular disease, are one of the main causes of mortality and morbidity in the developed world. Its main symptoms include shortness of breath and coughing, and, as COPD is a progressive disease, the symptoms usually worsen over time. The most common cause of COPD is smoking, with a smaller number of cases caused by air pollution or genetics. In 2004, Celli and colleagues developed the BODE Index, a grading system used to assess the respiratory and systemic expressions of COPD.

What is the BODE Index?

Patients with COPD are at a substantial risk of a serious co-morbidity. Early recognition and modification of factors associated with mortality may improve their survival.
BODE Index is a tool that includes 4 easily measured variables:

  • (B) - Body Mass Index (BMI);
  • (O) - obstruction of the airflow, measured by FEV1 (% of predicted);
  • (D) - dyspnea, measured by the Modified Medical Research Council (MMRC) dyspnea scale; and
  • (E) - exercise capacity, measured by the 6-minute walk distance test.

The four variables described above were chosen by Celli et al. because:

  • BMI values below 21 were associated with an increased risk of death;
  • Forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) is a physiological variable that is often used to grade the severity of COPD;
  • MMRC dyspnea scale predicts the likelihood of survival among patients with COPD and correlates well with other scales and health status scores; and
  • 6-minute walk distance test, similar to the Duke Treadmill Score, is a standardized exercise test. It is used to assess aerobic capacity and endurance, but it also predicts the risk of death in patients with COPD.

How to calculate BODE score?

The BODE score ranges from 0 to 10 points. Each variable is scored as follows:

0 points
+ 1 point
+ 2 points
+ 3 points
FEV1 (% of predicted)
6MWD test
≥350 m
250–349 m
150–249 m
≤149 m
MMRC dyspnea scale
0 or 1 point

BODE Index interpretation

A group of researchers validated the BODE Index and estimated the 4-year survival chance for COPD patients.

BODE Index interpretation as a 4-year survival is presented below:

  • A BODE score of 0 to 2 points is associated with 80% survival;
  • A score of 3 to 4 points - 67% survival;
  • A score of 5 to 6 points - 57% survival; and
  • A score of 7 to 10 points - 18% survival.

BODE Index calculator - a practical example

We will use an example to show how the BODE Index calculator works.

Let's calculate BODE score for the patient with the following results:

  • FEV1 - 66%;
  • 6-minute walk distance test - 360 meters (394 yards);
  • BMI - 25 m²/kg; and
  • MMRC dyspnea scale - 2 points.

This patient will score 0 points for FEV1, the 6-minute walk distance test, and BMI, but will get 1 point for scoring 2 points on MMRC dyspnea scale. Therefore:

  • The BODE score for this patient equals 1 point; and
  • The BODE Index interpretation: estimated 4-year survival for this patient equals 80%.
Joanna Michałowska, PhD candidate
FEV1 (% predicted)
65% or more
6-min walk distance
350 m (383 yds) or more
mMRC Dyspnea Scale
0 or 1 point
⬆️ Dyspnea only when strenuously exercising, such as when walking up a slight hill or when in a hurry.
BODE Index score
Estimated 4-year survival of this patient: 80%.
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