Pulmonary fibrosis refers to scaring of the lungs which are a result of chronic inflammatory processes, infections, exposure to harmful agents, exposure to radiation or generalized chronic infections including lupus and rheumatoid arthritis and other medications. In addition, some individuals suffer from idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), which doesn’t respond to any medical treatment.
Pulmonary Fibrosis Life Expectancy And Prognosis
The prognosis and life expectancy after acquiring the condition are fairly poor. As per empirical evidence, majority of the patients survive for less than five years after acquiring the disease. Unfortunately, lung transplant is the only surgical procedure that improves the life expectancy of the patients affected with the condition.Currently various clinical trials are underway for treating the disease effectively.
Symptoms Of Pulmonary Fibrosis
The condition is associated with respiratory distress in the form of shortness of breath, reduced exercise tolerance and coughing. The severity and the combination of these symptoms tend to depend on the cause of the condition and tend to progress (worsen) over a period of time. To begin with patients complain of dry cough due to unexplained cause which is followed by dyspnea or shortness of breath. Dyspnea tends to worsen over a period of time. Dyspnea initially comes on with any physical activity, but subsequently, is more or less constant limiting and disabling the individual.Normally the progression of the disease is gradual but in rare cases may progress rapidly. This condition is often referred to as the Hamman-Rich syndrome