What Is Pulmonary Fibrosis?

Pulmonary fibrosis is an interstitial lung disease, part of a group of conditions that cause inflammation and scarring around the tiny alveoli (air sacs) in the lungs. The scarring is called fibrosis.

The scarring related to pulmonary fibrosis causes lung tissue to get thick and stiff, making it hard for the body to take in oxygen. This means the brain, heart and other vital organs don’t get the oxygen they need to function properly.

It’s estimated that 1 in 200 adults over 65 years of age has some form of idiopathic (unknown cause) pulmonary fibrosis. As many as 50,000 new cases are diagnosed each year.

Related Resources

Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation*

Lung Biopsy Podcast: Get detailed information about how a lung biopsy is performed and how to prepare for it.

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