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Pulmonary fibrosis is an irreversible transformation of the lung tissue into scar tissue. Pulmonary fibrosis is the result of recurrent or long-lasting (chronic) inflammation of the lung tissue.

Known causes of pulmonary fibrosis include persistent pneumonia, inhaled toxins (such as asbestos) and dusts, the use of certain medications, radiation (for example, cancers such as breast or lung cancer), circulatory diseases, kidney disease, sudden lung failure and certain diseases, such as sarcoidosis or rheumatoid arthritis. However, in many patients the cause of pulmonary fibrosis remains unknown (idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis).

The symptoms of pulmonary fibrosis are often less specific at first. Over time, the symptoms increase in severity and become more pronounced. Often sufferers notice that their physical capacity decreases. Everyday activities that used to be effortlessly accomplished make them faster out of breath. In the course of the disease, the shortness of breath is finally without any effort. Since more and more connective tissue forms in the lungs as part of the disease, the membrane thickened between alveoli and blood vessels. The oxygen from the air must therefore overcome a thicker layer to get into the blood. As a result, the oxygen content in the blood drops. The body tries to balance this condition by increasing the number of breaths per minute. Often also indicates a longer existing dry irritating cough, a disease of the lung.

The aim of treating pulmonary fibrosis is to halt the course of the disease or at least slow down further fibrosis (fibrosis) as much as possible. If a triggering underlying disease (for example rheumatoid arthritis) is known, it must be treated accordingly. Other causes, such as harmful substances in the air or smoking, should be avoided as far as possible. It may also require a career change.

Often an excessive reaction of the immune system and inflammatory processes in the lung tissue contribute to the disease. Therefore, physicians often use medications for the treatment of pulmonary fibrosis, which have an anti-inflammatory effect and reduce the immune system (immunosuppressants). For example, one of the best-known representatives of this group is cortisone. The patient can either inhale the drug directly or receive it in the form of tablets or syringes. A newer agent with the active ingredient pirfendione inhibits the fibrosis and also counteract inflammation. If the oxygen level in the blood falls below a certain level, those affected receive additional oxygen via a probe - preferably over many hours a day. If the treatment does not take place and pulmonary fibrosis is already very advanced, the last treatment option is a lung transplantation.

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There are treatments for most of the different types of pulmonary fibrosis, and your treatment will depend on the specific form of pulmonary fibrosis you have. 2020-03-10 Pulmonary Fibrosis Treatment
Profiles of Doctors for Pulmonary Fibrosis Treatment
Pulmonary Fibrosis Treatment

Fibrous tissue is a type of connective tissue that consists of elastic, stretching fibers and contains a large amount of collagen. Due to chronic inflammation the body tissues can be replaced with fibrous tissue. This condition is called fibrosis and causes the loss of organ's functions. One of the most dangerous types of fibrosis is pulmonary fibrosis.

Reasons

Following long pathogenic influence can trigger the replacement of lung tissues with fibrous excrescence:

  • Smoking
  • Work in chemical production
  • Chemotherapy
  • Pneumonia
  • Tuberculosis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis

The prevention of lung fibrosis consists of the treatment of the above mentioned diseases, smoking cessation and stopping other unhealthy habits.

Symptoms of fibrosis

  • Dyspnea
  • Cough
  • Hemoptysis (coughing up of blood)
  • Pallor
  • Changes in the shape of nails and fingers
  • Swelling of legs
  • Prompt fatigability

Classification of fibrosis

Lung fibrosis can have an acute and a chronic form. In contrast to its chronic form, acute fibrosis occurs relatively rarely and lasts for 2-3 weeks. The chronic form of fibrosis develops gradually. Doctors distinguish between three stages of fibrosis, depending on the grade of lesions of lung tissues:

  • Pneumofibrosis is a local growth of fibrous tissue.
  • Sclerosis. In this case the fibrous tissues occupy a significant part of the lung, a pulmonary consolidation takes place. At this stage, the root fibrosis — the lesion of the roots of the lung — often develops.
  • Cirrhosis. In this case the lung tissue is completely replaced by fibrous tissue, the organ does not perform its functions. Nearby vessels and bronchi get damaged.

In the bilateral cirrhosis of the lungs, the person dies from respiratory or heart failure or thromboembolism. This disease increases the risk of cancer formation by 14 times, which can cause death even on early stages of fibrosis.

Medical treatment of pulmonary fibrosis

Treatment of fibrosis on the early stages is combined of drug therapy and oxygen inhalation. In case of large fibroblast foci doctors remove of the damaged part of the lung. If fibrosis has developed into the stage of cirrhosis, the only treatment option is lung transplantation. Adequate and timely treatment can guarantee the patients normal life expectancy.

Treatment of fibrosis in Germany

German Medical Group is an aggregator of clinics, bringing together more than 150 European medical. The company can help you get the medical services in leading German clinics:

Bad Berka Clinic

The clinic is among the best German hospitals according to the FOCUS magazine rating in 2017. The Pulmonology Department of the Bad Berka Clinic has all the necessary technical and human resources for the treatment of any types of lung diseases, including fibrosis.

Düren Medical Center

The center specializes in thoracic surgery and can perform the most complex lung surgeries, including transplantation. The center is characterized by the active use of minimally invasive and non-traumatizing interventions, which reduces patient recovery time.

Braunschweig Clinic

The clinic has a furnished and fully equipped Department of Thoracic Surgery, which has been annually conducting thousands of lung surgeries for 25 years.

German Medical Group provides its services without intermediaries: you do not need to overpay for the treatment. Thank to cooperation with clinics we can organize on-line consultations with German doctors and assist patients with paperwork. German Medical Group consultants will help you choose the right clinic and provide you with interpreting services.

Latest News in Pulmonary Fibrosis Treatment

Hannover Medical School scientists investigate fibrosis of the lungs

23.04.2019

A working group of the Hannover Medical School (MHH) around Danny Jonigk from the Institute of Pathology wants to develop therapeutic options for previously incurable lung diseases. In the next five years, the team will be examining around 700 diseased lungs, which will be taken from patients by transplants. In 2017, around 120 lungs were transplanted at the MHH.

Jonigk uses these lungs to study, in particular, the mechanism of so-called fibrosis, which is at the center of the disease. This is the abnormal proliferation of connective tissue in the lungs that causes the lung to stop functioning properly. Macrophages play a key role in this process. These cells are to be modified by means of a so-called gene scissors so that they can halt or reverse the course of the disease.

In the long term, these macrophages should be administered to patients by infusion or inhalation for therapeutic purposes. The scientists work very closely with working groups of the MHH Clinic for Cardiac, Thoracic, Transplantation and Vascular Surgery, the MHH Clinic for Pulmonology and the MHH Institute for Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology.

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