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Interstitial Lung Disease

What do you mean by Interstitial Lung Disease?

Interstitial Lung Disease is a group of lung diseases in which there is scarring of lung tissues between and supporting the air sacs. This may cause lung stiffness and greatly affect a person’s ability to breathe. As a result of this, one may not get sufficient oxygen into the bloodstream.

What causes Interstitial Lung Disease?

Interstitial Lung Disease occurs when your lungs are injured and in response to this, abnormal healing takes place where the tissue surrounding the air sacs thickens and becomes scarred. Due to this, it becomes difficult for the oxygen to pass into the blood stream. There are many triggers for Interstitial Lung Disease, namely:

  • Occupational and environmental factors – Asbestos, silica dust, talc, coal dust, grain dust and bird proteins
  • Medications and radiation –Chemotherapy, radiation therapy, Heart medications and some antibiotics
  • Medical conditions – Dermatomyositis, pulmonary vasculitis, rheumatoid arthritis, scleroderma, sjogren’s syndrome and systemic lupus erythematosus
What are the symptoms of Interstitial Lung Disease?

The main signs and symptoms of Interstitial Lung Disease are:

  • Dry cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Weight loss
How can Interstitial Lung Disease be treated?

Interstitial Lung Disease is often irreversible. But with the help of various treatment options, symptoms can be improved or the progression of the disease can be slowed. It may include:

  • Antibiotics
  • Corticosteroids
  • Inhaled oxygen
  • Lung transplant