Diffuse interstitial lung disease - Treatment
Diffuse parenchymal lung disease; Alveolitis; Cryptogenic fibrosing alveolitis (CFA); Idiopathic pulmonary pneumonitis (IPP)
Treatment depends on the cause of the disease. Anti-inflammatory drugs, such as corticosteroids or drugs that suppress the immune system, are prescribed if an autoimmune disease is causing the problem.
If there is no specific treatment for the condition, therapy is aimed at making you more comfortable and supporting lung function.
Some patients with advanced ILD may need a lung transplant.
For additional information and resources, see lung disease support group.
Chances of recovery or the disease getting worse depend on the cause, and how severe the disease was when it was first diagnosed.
Calling your health care provider:
Call your health care provider if:
- Your breathing is getting harder, faster, or more shallow than before
- You cannot get a deep breath, or need to lean forward when sitting
- You are having headaches more often
- You feel sleepy or confused
- You have a fever
- You are coughing up dark mucus
- Your fingertips or the skin around your fingernails is blue
- Reviewed last on: 1/22/2010
- Allen J. Blaivas, DO, Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine, UMDNJ-NJMS, Attending Physician in the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine, Department of Veteran Affairs, VA New Jersey Health Care System, East Orange, NJ. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
Goldman L, Ausiello D. Cecil Medicine. 23rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders; 2008.
American Thoracic Society/European Respiratory Society International Multidisciplinary Consensus. Classification of the Idiopathic Interstitial Pneumonias. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2002;165:277-304.
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