About cryptogenic fibrosing alveolitis

What is cryptogenic fibrosing alveolitis?

When there is a disease in the lung called cryptogenic fibrous alveolitis, it is called an interstitial lung disease (or ILD for short). They affect the tissues that support air sacs in the lungs, making it hard for them to take in as much air as the body needs for good health. A person who has fibrosing alveolitis has thick and scarred lungs that are hard to breathe through. Over time, they become less flexible, which makes it hard to breathe. This disease is most common in late age patients, i.e. age group of 40 to 70 years. The symptoms of breathing problems, especially during exercise are common. Other symptoms are weight loss, fatigue, and fever. This disease progresses in the body, and the 5 year survival rate, as per some medical studies, is only 50%. inflammation of the lungs is caused by the disease, which might be one of the key factors as the disease progresses in the body. Environmental factors such as dust, chemical inhalation, smoking etc. might be responsible for the disease, but the death rates are the same in people with manual jobs and the rest of the people. Some genetic factors might be responsible for the disease as well.



What are the symptoms for cryptogenic fibrosing alveolitis?

Cryptogenic Fibrosing Alveolitis is a disease of the lungs in which the alveoli of the lungs faces inflammation and fibrosis. It is a life-threatening disease which gets worse as the disease progresses. The 5-year survival rate of the disease is only 50%. It is a rare disease and is characterized by the thickening or stiffening of the lung tissues. Symptoms of cryptogenic fibrosing alveolitis are as follows:- Dry cough,Difficulty breathing especially after exercise. There is pain in the chest.A lot of the time, these symptoms, like not being able to breathe, don't seem very bad at first. There are a lot of people who think that their Breathlessness is because they haven't been exercising enough, or because they are getting older. It is important to get checked out if you have these symptoms. There are some things that can get worse over time, making even simple tasks more difficult. You cannot avoid the treatment, and any delay after the onset of symptoms can be fatal. 



What are the causes for cryptogenic fibrosing alveolitis?

Cryptogenic Fibrosing Alveolitis is a disease of the lungs in which the alveoli of the lungs faces inflammation and fibrosis. It is a life-threatening disease which gets worse as the disease progresses. The 5-year survival rate of the disease is only 50%. It is a rare disease characterized by the thickening or stiffening of the lung tissues. The causes of the Cryptogenic Fibrosing Alveolitis are mostly unknown, and the disease may occur in isolation, in which case the symptoms are mostly respiratory, or it may occur along with other diseases like rheumatoid arthritis. In any case, there are no diagnostic tests apart from biopsy reports. As the disease is fatal, detection via biopsy is important. Although most causes of the disease are unknown, there have been some recent studies which have tried to conclude the causes of the disease via analysis. It has been observed that certain professions are more liable to getting the disease. The professions include exposure to metal dust or wood dust. Also, exposure to cattle is linked to a higher chance of the disease. In some cases, if you stay in a house heated by wooden fire, or if you are exposed to wooden fire in closed areas, you might get the disease. Smoking is not linked to the disease as per the analysis, and both smokers and non-smokers have a similar chance of getting the disease. 



What are the treatments for cryptogenic fibrosing alveolitis?

The treatment for Cryptogenic Fibrosing Alveolitis is possible with medications. The steps to treat the patients are as follows:-1) Treatment to slow the scarring of the lungs- The disease causes the lungs to scar, and as we know that it is impossible to repair the lungs with medications. Therefore, the primary usage of drugs is to slow the scarring of the lungs and protect the lungs from further damage. There are currently 2 drugs which are used, and the drugs are Pirfenidone and Nintedanib. Both the drugs are equally effective as per the current analysis. There might be some possible side effects of the drugs like diarrhea, feeling sick and tired, decreased appetite, etc. 2) Supportive treatment- The supportive treatment will work for other symptoms that you might face. For example, for coughing, the doctor might recommend liquid morphine or some basic steps like sipping water slowly to regulate the coughing. For the breathlessness, your doctor might recommend some breathing exercises to cope with breathlessness. For sever cases of breathlessness, lorazepam might be used as well. Similarly for acid reflux and anxiety, your doctor might recommend medicines depending on the severity of the problem and your specific case.3) Self care- A good lifestyle can help you cope with the disease. You need to follow the basics like a good and healthy diet, some moderate exercise, no smoking, etc. Also you need to sleep well. Also you should take pneumonia, flu and coronavirus vaccines to prevent you from developing more complications. If you feel mental issues, you should consult a psychiatrist. It is possible to face mental issues because of the stress of the disease. You should consult your doctor regularly, and inform him/her about any discomfort you might be facing. If you follow the treatment well, you are sure to get good results. 



What are the risk factors for cryptogenic fibrosing alveolitis?

Cryptogenic Fibrosing Alveolitis is a disease of the lungs in which the alveoli of the lungs faces inflammation and fibrosis. It is a life-threatening disease which gets worse as the disease progresses. The 5-year survival rate of the disease is only 50%. It is a rare disease characterized by the thickening or stiffening of the lung tissues.  The disease can occur alone, or it is possible that it combines with other diseases as well. The risk factors for the disease are unknown, but some studies have tried to narrow down the risk factors. Risk factors are some professions which expose you to metal dust or wood dust. Also, if you stay in houses which are not well ventilated, and you are exposed to wood burning to keep you warm indoors, you might be at a higher risk factor to get the disease. Also, if you have exposure to cattle on a daily basis, you might be liable to get the disease. Smoking is found to not contribute to the disease, but if you get the disease, smoking can make the symptoms worse and difficult to manage. There are no diagnostic tests to detect the disease, and it can be detected only via biopsy tests of your lungs. If you have high inflammation of the lungs, you should start your treatment immediately. 



Is there a cure/medications for cryptogenic fibrosing alveolitis?

Cryptogenic fibrosing alveolitis scars the lungs and causes inflammation of the lungs. This can be fatal, and the 5-year survival rate of the disease is only 50%. If your lungs are damaged, it is impossible to repair your lungs with medication. But you can prevent further scarring of the lungs with medication to ensure that the damage is contained. Currently, there are two drugs which are used to prevent the further scarring of the lungs, and both the drugs are found to be equally effective. The two drugs are Pirfenidone and Nintedanib. These drugs can only be used only if your lung function is within defined limits. Therefore, you should consult your doctor before taking the medication. Pirfenidone is used as tablets to be consumed with meals. The tablet slows down the rate at which the lungs deteriorate, and improves life expectancy. Some side effects might be observed like feeling sick, feeling tired, rashes on the skin, and diarrhea. Nintedanib is used in the form of capsules and it slows down the rate of deterioration of the lungs just like Pirfenidone. Some common side effects may be diarrhea, stomach pain, feeling sick, and decreased appetite. Nintedanib cannot be taken with blood thinners, and if you are on blood thinners, you cannot take this medication. The capsule can increase the life expectancy of the patients. Apart from these, you can also take medications for common occurring supporting problems like coughing, breathlessness, acid reflux and anxiety. You should consult your doctor for specific medications for these issues. 



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