In this study, the relation between emergency admissions for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) at an Istanbul University Hospital between the years 1997 and 2001 and the meteorological and air pollution parameters has been analysed. Admissions were calculated for each month, and the relations between the number of admissions for each month and the corresponding month's meteorological parameters (pressure, temperature, moisture) and the average pollution values (CO, SO2, NO, NO2, PM10) were determined. There were 1586 patients included in this study. COPD admissions had a negative significant correlation with temperature (r = -0.72, p < 0.001), a positive significant correlation with pressure (r = 0.41, p = 0.001) and humidity (r = 0.34, p = 0.007), and also had a positive significant correlation with SO2 (r = 0.64, p < 0.001), NO (r = 0.40, p = 0.002), CO (r = 0.57, p < 0.001) and PM10 (r = 0.27, p = 0.03). No significant relationship was found for NO2. When the meteorological and clinical parameters were evaluated, it was found that the only variable related to the COPD admissions was temperature. These results for COPD admissions were found to be considerably higher in seasons other than summer (p < 0.001). When summer seasonal values were taken as reference (RR = 1), RR = 1.24 (95% CI: 1.049-1.475) for autumn, RR = 1.86 (95% CI: 1.541-2.115) for spring and RR = 2.08 (95% CI: 1.793-2.434) for winter. Air pollution and meteorological parameters should be seen as a widespread public health problem, which can trigger admission and even death due to COPD.