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Pulmonary Fibrosis


Overview :

Pulmonary fibrosis develops when the alveoli, tiny air sacs that transfer oxygen to the blood, become damaged and inflamed. The body tries to heal the damage with scars, but these scars collapse the alveoli and make the lungs less elastic. If the cycle of inflammation and scarring continues, the lungs become increasingly unable to deliver oxygen to the blood. Changes in the lungs can also increase the blood pressure in the pulmonary artery. This condition, called pulmonary hypertension, makes the heart work harder and it may fail.

Pulmonary fibrosis can result from many different lung diseases including sarcoidosis, drug reactions, autoimmune diseases, environmental allergies such as Farmer's lung, and exposure to toxic dusts and gases.

Pulmonary fibrosis that develops without a known cause is called idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. This disease is equally common in men and women. It is usually diagnosed between the ages of 40 and 60.




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