Interstitial lung disease is an umbrella term that covers a group of more than 200 chronic lung disorders that inflame and scar the lungs. The affected area is called the interstitium, a support network for the air sacs (alveoli).
While some individuals are more at-risk than others, interstitial lung disease can affect anyone.
Once lung tissue is scarred, it cannot be repaired. This results in a disease called pulmonary fibrosis, which makes breathing progressively more difficult.
Some other examples of interstitial lung disease include:
Symptoms of interstitial lung disease include:
Most causes of interstitial lung disease are unknown, but some common causes include:
Our OSF HealthCare pulmonary physicians will administer pulmonary function tests.
If you are diagnosed with an interstitial lung disease, our multidisciplinary team will work with you to tame the inflammation and prevent additional scarring.
The symptoms of some conditions can be managed to a point of allowing you a relatively normal lifestyle. More severe conditions are life-threatening.
Our goal is to help you remain strong and as active as possible, without breathing difficulty.
Depending on the specific type and severity of your disease, treatment options may include:
OSF HealthCare does not perform lung transplants, but we work with transplant centers in Chicago and St. Louis.