The most common symptom of pulmonary fibrosis is shortness of breath. In early stages, the condition often produces only mild breathlessness, which may be unnoticeable at first. Over time, as scar tissue continues to accumulate in the lungs, the associated breathing difficulties typically worsen. For instance, some individuals initially become winded during intense exercise, but later find themselves gasping for air while performing simple daily tasks, such as showering, dressing, speaking and ultimately even while at rest.
Other common symptoms of pulmonary fibrosis include:
- A persistent, hacking cough that does not produce phlegm
- Bouts of uncontrollable coughing
- Fast, shallow breathing
- Unexplained weakness and fatigue
- Loss of appetite and unintended weight loss
- Muscle and joint pain
- Clubbing (a rounding and widening of the fingertips)
Presently, there is no cure for pulmonary fibrosis, so the main focus of treatment is symptom relief. Some traditional options include the use of supplemental oxygen, corticosteroids, immunotherapy and pulmonary rehabilitation. In very severe and advanced cases, lung transplant surgery may be recommended for pulmonary fibrosis treatment.
The Lung Health Institute offers cellular therapy as an alternative treatment for pulmonary fibrosis and other forms of interstitial lung disease. Our minimally invasive outpatient procedures are designed to take advantage of the natural reparative capabilities of cells. After drawing a sample of a patient’s blood, our regenerative medicine specialists break down the various components in our on-site lab, and then reintroduce highly concentrated cells into the patient’s bloodstream. The cells may then travel directly to the patient’s heart and, within a few beats, reach the lungs, where they may stimulate the healing of damaged tissue.
As a world-recognized leader in regenerative medicine and cellular research, the Lung Health Institute specializes in cellular therapy for chronic respiratory conditions. For more information on how we can help you manage your pulmonary fibrosis symptoms, contact us at 888-745-6697.