The damage caused by can’t be repaired, but medications and therapies can sometimes help ease and improve quality of life.

For some people, a lung transplant might be appropriate.

Signs and symptoms of pulmonary fibrosis may include:

  • Shortness of breath (dyspnea)
  • A dry cough
  • Fatigue
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Aching muscles and joints
  • Widening and rounding of the tips of the fingers or toes (clubbing)

The course of pulmonary fibrosis — and the severity of symptoms — can vary considerably from person to person. Some people become ill very quickly with severe . Others have moderate symptoms that worsen more slowly, over months or years.

pulmonary fibrosis

Some people may experience a rapid worsening of their symptoms (acute exacerbation), such as severe shortness of breath, that may last for several days to weeks.

People who have acute exacerbations may be placed on a mechanical ventilator.

Doctors may also prescribe antibiotics, corticosteroid medications or other medications to treat an acute exacerbation.

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