Symptoms stay at the more severe level for days or even weeks. As acute exacerbation wears off, patients return to their usual level of symptoms.
What is Pulmonary Fibrosis?
ulmonary fibrosis is a disease in which lung tissue becomes scarred. Long-term damage to this tissue makes oxygen transfer in the body less efficient. Sufferers may find they are short of breath even when performing everyday activities.
Other symptoms include:
- A dry cough
- Muscle and joint aches
- Unexplained weight loss
- Fingers or toes that widen and become rounder at the tips
- Pulmonary fibrosis patients are at risk of acute exacerbation, a situation where symptoms get worse very quickly
What Causes Pulmonary Fibrosis?
Many cases of pulmonary fibrosis are idiopathic. This means there is no clear cause for the disorder. Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis generally grows worse over time, but the exact prognosis varies from one person to another.
Pulmonary fibrosis symptoms may come on suddenly and worsen dramatically for one person while taking many years to progress for another. One of the key questions asked by pulmonary fibrosis research is what factors contribute to more rapid disease progression.
Not all cases of pulmonary fibrosis are idiopathic. Environmental factors can cause damage to the tissues between air sacs in the lungs, eventually leading to pulmonary fibrosis. The disease is more common in people in mining, farming, and construction.
Risk factors discovered to date include:
- Exposure to toxins including silica dust, coal dust, and asbestos fibers
- Certain forms of radiation therapy for treating lung or breast cancer
- Some chemotherapy drugs, heart medications, and antibiotic drugs
- Several other medical conditions affecting the lungs, like pneumonia
Pulmonary fibrosis clinical trials have grown in number in recent years. New clinical resources for pulmonary fibrosis are often offered to patients on a trial basis to determine their efficacy.
How is Pulmonary Fibrosis Diagnosed?
Pulmonary fibrosis evaluation begins with a standard exam. Here, a doctor will take a medical history and listen to the patient’s breathing using a stethoscope. Imaging tests including x-ray, CT scans, and echocardiogram can be used to look at the lungs and heart.
If imaging tests reveal concerns, lung function tests are performed.
One of the most common is pulmonary function testing. This may include spiormetry, which measures lung capacity when a patient exhales forcefully, or an exercise stress test measuring lung function while jogging on a treadmill.
How is Pulmonary Fibrosis Treated or Cured?
No medication can reverse the lung damage associated with pulmonary fibrosis. While future treatments may prove effective in stopping the course of the disease, none are available yet.
Pirfenidone and nintedanib are two recent medications being prescribed to slow the progress of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. Several other formulations are working through FDA approval.
Medication can ease symptoms of disorders that frequently appear alongside pulmonary fibrosis, such as GERD. Oxygen therapy and pulmonary rehabilitation are other options that strengthen and maintain lung capacity. In severe cases, lung transplantation is used.
Maintaining cardiovascular fitness through a personalized program of regular aerobic exercise is effective in helping many patients sustain healthier lungs.
Patients should be aware of how their body responds to exertion and avoid situations where they must stand or walk long periods of time without rest.
After a pulmonary fibrosis diagnosis, patients should cease smoking immediately. Also avoid situations where secondhand smoke or other airborne pollutants will be inhaled.
Pulmonary Fibrosis Clinical Trials
The following clinical trial are the most recent offered by Clinicaltrials.gov. If you would like us to feature any additional trials, please contact our team.
ClinicalTrials.gov: Recruiting Studies | Pulmonary Fibrosis | Last update posted in the last 300 days Studies found on ClinicalTrials.gov by a search of: Recruiting Studies | Pulmonary Fibrosis | Last update posted in the last 300 days
Evaluation of Efficacy and Safety of PLN-74809 in Patients With Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
on May 21, 2020 at 4:00 pm
Condition: Idiopathic Pulmonary FibrosisInterventions: Drug: PLN-74809; Drug: PlaceboSponsor: Pliant Therapeutics, Inc.Recruiting
Host and Bacterial Mechanisms During Cystic Fibrosis Pulmonary Exacerbations
on April 21, 2020 at 4:00 pm
Condition: Cystic FibrosisIntervention: Sponsor: National Jewish HealthRecruiting
Bacterial Gene Profiling to Predict Antibiotic Resistance During Cystic Fibrosis Pulmonary Exacerbations
on April 10, 2020 at 4:00 pm
Condition: Cystic FibrosisIntervention: Sponsors: National Jewish Health; Cystic Fibrosis FoundationRecruiting
Treatment of Pulmonary Fibrosis Due to 2019-nCoV Pneumonia With Fuzheng Huayu
on February 21, 2020 at 5:00 pm
Condition: Pulmonary Fibrosis Due to 2019-nCoVInterventions: Drug: N-acetylcysteine+ Fuzheng Huayu Tablet; Drug: N-acetylcysteine+PlaceboSponsors: ShuGuang Hospital; Hubei Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine; Jingmen No.1 People’s Hospital; Tongji HospitalRecruiting
A Study of Patients With Chronic Disease
on February 11, 2020 at 5:00 pm
Conditions: Asthma; Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease; Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis; IPF; COPD; Respiratory DiseaseIntervention: Sponsor: Target PharmaSolutions, Inc.Recruiting
Coping Strategies Within Pulmonary Rehabilitation in Patients With IPF and COPD
on February 6, 2020 at 5:00 pm
Conditions: Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis; Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary DiseaseIntervention: Sponsor: Schön Klinik Berchtesgadener LandRecruiting
Safety, Tolerability and Pharmacokinetic Study of LTI-03 in Healthy Adult Subjects
on January 18, 2020 at 5:00 pm
Condition: Idiopathic Pulmonary FibrosisInterventions: Drug: Caveolin-1-Scaffolding-Protein-Derived Peptide (LTI-03); Drug: PlaceboSponsor: Lung Therapeutics, IncRecruiting
ANG-3070 in Healthy Adult Participants
on December 12, 2019 at 5:00 pm
Condition: Idiopathic Pulmonary FibrosisInterventions: Drug: ANG3070; Drug: Placebo oral capsuleSponsor: Angion Biomedica CorpRecruiting
Cardiovascular Fibrosis in Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
on November 26, 2019 at 5:00 pm
Conditions: Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis; Cardiac Fibrosis; Arterial FibrosisIntervention: Sponsor: San Gerardo HospitalRecruiting
Comparison of Different Functional Capacity Tests in Cystic Fibrosis Patients With Acute Pulmonary Exacerbation
on November 22, 2019 at 5:00 pm
Conditions: Cystic Fibrosis in Children; Exercise CapacityIntervention: Diagnostic Test: 1-minute sit to stand testSponsor: Hacettepe UniversityRecruiting
Mucoid Staphylococcus Aureus in Cystic Fibrosis Airways
on November 21, 2019 at 5:00 pm
Conditions: Staphylococcus Aureus Pneumonia; Lung Diseases; Cystic Fibrosis; Lung Function DecreasedIntervention: Sponsor: University Hospital MuensterRecruiting
Korean Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis Registry
on November 13, 2019 at 5:00 pm
Condition: Idiopathic Pulmonary FibrosisIntervention: Sponsor: Seoul National University HospitalRecruiting