A type of chronic disease that typically worsens over time and is characterised by long-term breathing problems and poor airflow. Chronic bronchitis and emphysema are older terms used for COPD5
A test that shows how well the lungs are working by measuring how much oxygen and carbon dioxide is in the blood. This test requires that a small volume of blood be drawn from the patient3
A procedure in which a bronchoscope (a medical instrument like a tube) is passed through the mouth or nose into the lung and fluid is squirted into a small part of the lung and then collected for examination4
People with IPF may take a variety of medications to help treat their IPF and other conditions they may have.
One of the most common types of medication for IPF are antifibrotic medicines. These aim to slow the scarring and stiffening of lung tissue and slow down disease progression.
Medications for people with IPF and other conditions
People with IPF often have other co-existing diseases and illnesses that can have a big impact on their quality of life. These extra diseases are known as comorbidities, or concomitant diseases.
Some concomitant diseases may impact the progression of IPF and can affect your overall health and sense of wellbeing.
Some of the common concomitant diseases patients with IPF may have include:1,2
- Gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD/GERD depending on region), or acid reflux disease
- Other lung diseases (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease [COPD], emphysema, lung cancer)
- Heart and vascular diseases such as pulmonary hypertension (high blood pressure in blood vessels that supply the lungs) or heart disease
- Obstructive sleep apnoea (repeated pauses while breathing during sleep)
Different medicines can interact with one another in the body, this is why your treatment team might change your medications if you are prescribed a new treatment for IPF or a concomitant disease
You may be given more than one medication to treat IPF and any other concomitant diseases
Antifibrotics are some of the most commonly used IPF medications
Being prescribed a new medication may affect other treatments you are taking. This is because some medications interact with each other
Raghu G, et al. An official ATS/ERS/JRS/ALAT Clinical Practice Guideline: Treatment of Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis. An Update of the 2011 Clinical Practice Guideline. Am J Respir Crit Care Med 2015; 192: e3-19.
Oldham JM, et al. Comorbid Conditions in Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis: Recognition and Management. Front Med (Lausanne) 2017; 4:123.
It is important to stay positive, to find the doctor that you trust in, to have a good support from the family, stay active, have a healthy food intake, and so overall it is important to create a positive atmosphere