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Pulmonary Fibrosis Stages, Prognosis and Life Expectancy

Pulmonary Fibrosis Stages, Prognosis and Life Expectancy

Everything you need to know about pulmonary fibrosis stages, prognosis and life expectancy and what to do next.

For those who are currently living with pulmonary fibrosis (PF), the shock of the initial diagnosis is often devastating. As a degenerative lung disease, the development of pulmonary fibrosis can often mean the start of significant changes in habits and behaviors moving forward. As pulmonary fibrosis is broken down into stages, an assessment is given of a patient’s current health (prognosis), and a prediction of their anticipated life expectancy is determined, the next step is often addressing issues of lifestyle and suggestions for pulmonary fibrosis treatment options. Although this can be a lot of information to absorb at once, it’s vitally important to take control of the management of one’s health and assuring a better quality of life after a PF diagnosis.

With your health in mind, the Lung Institute is here to break down Pulmonary Fibrosis Stages, Prognosis, and Life Expectancy.

Pulmonary Fibrosis Stages

Unlike cases of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), where staging of the disease utilizes measurement techniques such as the GOLD System and BODE Index, pulmonary fibrosis staging is a bit harder to define. Traditionally, pulmonary fibrosis has been put into stages of mild, early, severe and advanced and these stages are based primarily on pulmonary function tests. Although these designations are helpful for doctors in monitoring disease progression and advising patients, these stages don’t account for particular variables. As it stands doctors have been developing a new staging system called the GAP Index, which utilizes four predictors: age, recent respiratory hospitalization, baseline FVC and 24-week change in FVC. After combining these scores, a stage diagnosis is assessed, allowing patients with pulmonary fibrosis to have a more accurate measure of their respiratory health.

Pulmonary Fibrosis Prognosis

Pulmonary Fibrosis Stages, Prognosis and Life Expectancy

A prognosis is nothing more than an assessment of your disease’s progression. In essence, it’s a more detailed depiction of disease stage, and associated symptoms and life expectancy (more on that later). Symptoms and indicators of disease progression include:

  • Disturbed sleep patterns
  • Need for intensive home support
  • Frequent flare-ups and hospitalizations
  • Increased severity in shortness of breath
  • Difficulty maintaining a healthy body weight
  • Chest pain
  • Depression
  • Poor appetite
  • Increased anxiety
  • Bothersome cough
  • Becoming housebound
  • Reduced lung function

Life Expectancy with Pulmonary Fibrosis

Determining the stage of pulmonary fibrosis is a subjective call made by your doctor, so predicting life expectancy with pulmonary fibrosis includes a margin of error. The rate of PF disease progression is inherent to the genetics and lifestyle habits of the individual’s themselves. For some, the disease progression may appear rapidly, leading to an increased pronouncement of symptoms. For others, the disease may progress more slowly, allowing a greater quality of life to continue for years. These differences in disease progression can have a significant effect on one’s lifestyle habits and behaviors. For example, to better improve one’s life expectancy and quality of life, it is imperative to quit smoking, follow a healthy diet, and exercise to as great a capacity as one is able.

Moving Forward with the Pulmonary Fibrosis Stages, Prognosis and Life Expectancy

Pulmonary Fibrosis Stages, Prognosis and Life Expectancy

A pulmonary fibrosis diagnosis, and the lack of information it can present, can create many difficulties in the lives of those who have been diagnosed. It’s important to understand the pulmonary fibrosis stages, prognosis and life expectancy, so you can stay proactive in your healthcare. Though PF can seem impossible to overcome, changing one’s diet and consistently exercising are among the best lifestyle changes aside from quitting smoking. When lifestyle changes fail to improve your quality of life in the way that you may expect, it may be time to consider stem cell therapy. Rather than simply addressing the symptoms of lung disease, stem cell therapy directly affects disease progression and can improve quality of life and pulmonary function.

If you or a loved one suffers from a chronic disease like PF, COPD, ILD or other symptoms of lung disease, the Lung Institute may be able to help with a variety of adult stem cell treatment options. Contact us today at (800) 729-3065 to see if you qualify for stem cell therapy, and find out what stem cell therapy could mean for you.

Interested in our article on Pulmonary Fibrosis Stages, Prognosis and Life Expectancy? Share your thoughts and comments below.


  1. Lung Institute

    2 months ago


    Thank you for your comment and we are very sorry to hear about your medical situation.

    The Lung Institute aims to deliver the highest quality of care for our patients as well as continually improve our treatments for our patients. We’re happy to answer your questions about stem cell therapy, so feel free to contact us at (855) 313-1149 to speak one-on-one with a patient coordinator. We look forward to hearing from you soon.


    The Lung Institute

  2. Donna Taylor

    2 months ago

    I have CPFE and several other medical problems that make CPFE even harder to navigate I have only part of my stomach left which they want me to have a revision on due to an ulcer bigger than a quarter aND 1cm deep that keeps growing, Blockages further down, pancreas issues, etc.,
    Fragile bones, serious sinus pRobles that may have caused much of this in the 90s when I got a rhizopus infection. I’M not HIV positive or diabetic. The antifungal drugs ruined my SYSTEM. I’ve outlived the life exepectancy by 5 years already, but my DISEASE us progressing and there is little info on this disease dynamic. It’s been hard to find any information, and I haven’t fit alot of patient SYMPTOMS IN COPD OR IPF GROUPS. IF THERE ARE ANY SUPPORT GROUPS OF CPFE AND INFORMATION YOU MAY KNOW OF, I’D BE GRATEFUL! IT’S AN INCREASING DISEASE ENTITY, SO I KNOW OTHERS COULD USE THE HELP. 12YRS INTO IT, I AM BECOMING SEVERELY DEPRESSED FROM THE DECLINE. MY PCP IN NEW , YET VERY UNEDUCATED AND DETACHED. I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO. THANK YOU, AND MY BEST TO ALL OF THE PATIENTS HERE!

  3. Lung Institute

    3 months ago


    Unfortunately, at this time, insurance companies don’t cover treatment. However, we’re hopeful that treatment will be covered by insurance companies in the near future. Keep in mind that it will take some time before the insurance companies see a financial benefit in their favor and then decide to cover it. In the meantime, you can learn more about stem cell treatment options and have your questions answered by one of our patient coordinators. Feel free to contact us at (855) 313-1149 for more information. We look forward to hearing from you soon.


    The Lung Institute

  4. sandy

    3 months ago

    Do you take insurance?

  5. Lung Institute

    5 months ago


    Thank you for your comment. I’m sorry to hear about your father’s diagnosis. To discuss his specific condition, please contact us by calling (855) 313-1149. One of our patient coordinators will be happy to assist you.


    Lung Institute

  6. Brett

    6 months ago

    I just found out my dad has pulmonary fibrosis. He is 75 years old. He quit smoking 12 years ago. Would he be a candidate for stem cells? Would that help? Thanks,


  7. Phoebe

    7 months ago

    Hi Kathy,

    First and foremost, we’re sorry to hear about the challenges your husband has been facing with pulmonary fibrosis. Typically, doctors prescribe medications and pulmonary therapies to help their patients. You can read more about these types of pulmonary fibrosis treatment options by clicking here. Remember, always talk with your husband’s doctor before trying different treatment options. Because your husband’s doctor knows him and his health situation well, the doctor will be able to best guide you and your husband.

    Best Regards,

    The Lung Institute

  8. kathy dobosz

    7 months ago

    my name kathy my husband has thise diseases it.s been very hard for him i went to the doctor and i asked him is there a druge he can take he said no sor e what can i do thank you

  9. Phoebe

    8 months ago

    Hi Arlette,

    We’re happy to answer your questions and your husband’s questions about stem cell therapy. We have a dedicated medical team who have a wealth of knowledge about stem cells, treatment options, candidacy and more. So, feel free to contact us at (855) 313-1149. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

    Best Regards,

    The Lung Institute

  10. Arlette Necol

    8 months ago

    I will contact you one day.No symptoms yet. Its for my husban.

  11. Phoebe

    10 months ago

    Dear Diane,

    You’re welcome. We’re happy to answer any questions you or your friend has about stem cell therapy, and we look forward to hearing from your friend. Again, our number is (855) 313-1149. We wish you and your friend the best.

    Kind Regards,

    The Lung Institute

  12. Diane Holden

    10 months ago

    Thank u for answering my question. I wIll share this with my friend. However, she is being seen by a pulmonary specialist who told her there is nothing to Be done and she has accepted this diagnosis and the prognosis. I pRay she will at least contact you to insure she has the correct information. Thank You again.

  13. Matt

    10 months ago

    Hello Diane,
    Thank you for your question. We do treat people with IPF here at the Lung Institute. We encourage your friend to give us a call at (855) 313-1149. That way our staff can learn more about her situation and find out if she is a candidate for treatment. Thanks again and have a great day.

  14. Diane

    10 months ago

    Writing for my Friend who has idiopathic pulmonary fiebosis diagnosed in october 2016. She is 84 years old, diabetic, but othErwise has been in good health. Has never smoked. Would stem cell replacement be something for her to consider?

  15. Matt

    11 months ago

    Hello Danny,
    Thank you for your question. Having a hip replacement does not prohibit you from having treatment. If you have any other questions, please contact your patient coordinator or call (855) 313-1149. Thanks again and have a great day.

  16. Danny Ferguson

    11 months ago

    I have spoken to the Lung Institute previously and received some information on your program. I am interested, but at this point, I still don’t know what I want to do – but I noted in some of the literature that you ask if the potential patient had ever had a hip replacement. I actually have had a replacement about 2 years ago. Why is that a concern? Does that prohibit the procedure?

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* All treatments performed at Lung Institute utilize autologous stem cells, meaning those derived from a patient's own body. No fetal or embryonic stem cells are utilized in Lung Institute's procedures. Lung Institute aims to improve patients' quality of life and help them breathe easier through the use of autologous stem cell therapy. To learn more about how stem cells work for lung disease, click here.

All claims made regarding the efficacy of Lung Institute's treatments as they pertain to pulmonary conditions are based solely on anecdotal support collected by Lung Institute. Individual conditions, treatment and outcomes may vary and are not necessarily indicative of future results. Testimonial participation is voluntary. Lung Institute does not pay for or script patient testimonials.

Under current FDA guidelines and regulations 1271.10 and 1271.15, the Lung Institute complies with all necessary requirements for operation. The Lung Institute is firmly in accordance with the conditions set by the FDA for exemption status and conducts itself in full accordance with current guidelines. Any individual who accesses Lung Institute's website for information is encouraged to speak with his or her primary physician for treatment suggestions and conclusive evidence. All information on this site should be used for educational and informational use only.

As required by Texas state law, the Lung Institute Dallas Clinic has received Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval from MaGil IRB, now Chesapeake IRB, which is fully accredited by the Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Program (AAHRPP), for research protocols and stem cell procedures. The Lung Institute has implemented these IRB approved standards at all of its clinics nationwide. Approval indicates that we follow rigorous standards for ethics, quality, and protections for human research.