Peter Hibberd, M.D., is a doctor whose advice is based on more than 28 years of hospital outpatient and inpatient experience. He is an experienced emergency medicine physician, surgeon, and consultant. Dr. Hibberd is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He is also a fellow and active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, an active member of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a member and fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Hibberd has earned numerous national and international professional certifications, memberships, and awards.

Is There Anything That Treats Secondary Pulmonary Fibrosis?

Monday, 19 July 2010 12:38 PM

Question: A close family friend is 40 years old and was just diagnosed with secondary pulmonary fibrosis. Is there anything she can take or do to treat this disease?

Dr. Hibberd's Answer:

Secondary pulmonary fibrosis is not a good situation. By definition, something has induced the fibrosis (hence it is called secondary) and scarring (otherwise called fibrosis) of lung tissue. No medications can reverse fibrosis, and regeneration of lung tissue in affected segments is generally not seen.

So here we have a chronic irreversible lung condition, where treatment is avoidance of the initial stimulating agent (be it drug, toxin, inhaled agent, etc.) and optimizing the function of the remaining lung tissue. Lung transplantation may be a high risk option available for some few patients who are otherwise healthy and those whose lungs are severely affected. These patients should be under the supervision of a pulmonary subspecialist in addition to their primary care physician.

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