Pulmonary fibrosis is an interstitial lung disease that causes lung scarring which affects a person's ability to breathe. The tissue deep in the lungs becomes thick, stiff, and scarred which causes breathing problems. There is no known cause of pulmonary fibrosis which is why such cases are called idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. This disease can develop slowly or quickly and can stay for prolonged periods. The main problem with pulmonary fibrosis is the ability to breathe normally gets affected.
The thins lacy walls of the air sacs in the lungs are responsible for adsorbing oxygen into the blood stream; they lose the ability to do this process effectively when scarred. This causes breathing problems and other discomforts in the lungs, with the stiffness and fibrosis making it very difficult to expand the lungs and breathe. More energy is required to breathe normally which causes discomfort and leads to shortness of breath to do activates which were otherwise easy to do.
The causes which are known for pulmonary fibrosis include exposure to toxins like asbestos, coal dust, and silica which are commonly faced by workers who are working in the coal mining or sandblasting industry. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body which is found in the bones, skin, and tendon. But there are certain collagen-related vascular diseases which lead to the first signs of pulmonary fibrosis. Medications have also known to have side effects which lead to pulmonary fibrosis.
Early symptoms of pulmonary fibrosis include dry cough, which can become chronic and as a result can last for a long time, and problems with breathing which leads to exertion. If this is not treated in the early stages, prolonged problems may lead to severe complications causing even more discomfort and fatigue. There have been cases where people lead a stable life even with pulmonary fibrosis, but mostly people will experience symptoms which will worsen over time and can deteriorate a person's overall health. Maintain a healthy lifestyle and regular consultation with medical professionals.
Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is more common since there is no exact cause and way of figuring out how many people have been affected by the condition. The fact the pulmonary fibrosis can coexist with other conditions like collagen-related vascular diseases with the condition being more common in men than women with people above the age of fifty being affected.
There is no proper cure available for pulmonary fibrosis yet, with only a handful of treatments aimed at preventing more lung scarring once the condition has been diagnosed. You can find out more information on dedicated medical websites about the condition and the course of necessary action to be taken once the condition has been diagnosed.