Everything You Need To Know About Pulmonary Fibrosis

August 16, 2021

Pulmonary fibrosis, the disease of the lung, affects the respiratory system. It occurs because of scarring in the lung or tissue damage. The person affected experiences shortness of breath. It slowly leads to severe oxygen deficiency, leading to heart problems as well.  

Pulmonary fibrosis has no cure but there are multiple treatments available to ease the symptoms. Identifying the symptoms at an early stage along with the appropriate medical help helps you manage the disease better.

Symptoms of Pulmonary Fibrosis

The symptoms of pulmonary fibrosis are mostly things we experience every now and then. This is why it is more important to take notice of these symptoms and consult a doctor immediately:

  1. Dry cough
  2. Weight loss
  3. Shortness of breath
  4. Widening of tips of nails
  5. Fatigue
  6. Change of skin colour due to oxygen shortage

While identifying the common symptoms will help you reach out for professional help, to truly identify the issue, the doctor has to get a chest CT scan to diagnose it accurately. This is because almost all the symptoms of pulmonary fibrosis are similar to other lung disorders making it hard to be diagnosed with just the symptoms. Due to this same reason, this disease also easily goes wrongly diagnosed or unnoticed leading to further complications. 

Since pulmonary fibrosis is a fatal and progressive disease, knowing the causes of it can help prevent it.

Causes of Pulmonary Fibrosis

  1. Genetics: People who have someone in their family with pulmonary fibrosis need to be extra careful if they experience any of the symptoms. Doctors believe that pulmonary fibrosis can affect someone because of heredity as well. 
  2. Environment pollutants: Since it affects the lungs, certain dust or micro-particles in the environment can slowly affect the lungs. If you live in a polluted area, it is best to wear a mask and cover yourself well before stepping out.
  3. Other medication & treatment: Certain medicines that you take for other ailments can have a side that affects the lungs over time. If you are going through radiation therapy like chemotherapy for cancer, it can also eventually lead to pulmonary fibrosis.
  4. Autoimmune diseases or infections: Sometimes, our immune system mistakes certain parts of us to be foreign and attacks them. This can lead to diseases that scar the lungs which eventually lead to pulmonary fibrosis as well. Certain viral infections also may scar the lungs.

Treatment Options

  1. Medications: To help heal the scarring in your lungs that is causing pulmonary fibrosis, your doctor might prescribe medications. This could also help reduce other symptoms.
  2. Oxygen therapy: Since you experience a severe shortage of breath, you will need oxygen therapy and access to oxygen cylinders at all times.
  3. Pulmonary rehabilitation: With exercises, you could help improve the functioning of your lungs.
  4. Lung transplant: For severe cases when the lung has almost lost its ability to function fully, you will need to opt for a lung transplant.

Stay ahead of the disease by getting yourself checked at the first sign of the disease. When you experience shortness of breath or other symptoms, it is important to not ignore them. Book an appointment with Specialist Hospital, Bangalore for the best diagnosis and advanced treatment options. At Specialist, our expert team of doctors in the pulmonology department are experienced to treat every mild to severe lung disorder and guide you to full recovery. Book an appointment, today.

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