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Interstitial lung diseases represent a variety of disorders that can lead to diffuse remodelling and architectural damage to normal lung tissue and may cause progressive loss of lung function. Some of these disease may progress very slowly, so one should not worry of early or sudden death with these disease conglomerate. There are treatment available like corticosteroids and other immunosuppressive agents. Newer approaches to therapies that target molecular and cellular aspects of tissue fibrogenesis as well as the disruption of vascular homeostasis that accompanies many of these disorders have shown efficacy and lot of clinical trials have been going on with the good initial results with antifibrotic or antisense agents, gene therapies, or the use of stem cells.
Please feel free for your follow up questions.
follow up questions-
what im really asking is what does progressive mean? in other words, can i live my normal life span albeit with respiratory compromise or is progressive a euphemism for slow death.
should i keep exercising? are these newer treatments readily available?
how likely is sarcoidosis as a cause? inother words, statistically can i live a long life with this
how will bronchoscopy help me prognostically?
1) Since many of the interstitial lung diseases are progressive (get worsened with time and age), some lung compromise is inevitable, but that does not necessarily decrease the life span.
2) Breathing exercises are encouraged. The other physical exercises too are not prohibited, if they are tolerated well.
3) The tissue biopsy is answer whether it is sarcoidosis or any other disorder. So it is difficult to answer on this. Statistically, many patients will live long life with some of the interstitial lung diseases.
4) Bronchoscopy is mainly a diagnostic modality and may also get some tissue for the biopsy. It does not have any relation with the prognosis.
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