Restrictive lung disease is a chronic lung condition that limits or greatly decreases the ability to expand during inhalation of the person’s lung. Here are the things that you should know about restrictive lung disease.
FAQs About Restrictive Lung Disease
What Is Restrictive Lung Disease?
This is a long-term lung condition in which the person cannot fill their lungs with air due to the restriction from full expansion. The condition causes a decreased lung volume or capacity making the person’s breathing rates rise to meet the oxygen demand. Restrictive lung diseases are categorized as extrinsic and intrinsic.
Extrinsic restrictive lung diseases include:
- Myasthenia gravis
- Pleural Effusion
Intrinsic restrictive lung diseases include:
- Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis
- Interstitial lung disease
What Are the Symptoms of Restrictive Lung Disease?
Besides the main symptom of shortness of breath, restrictive lung disease also has several symptoms such:
- Fatigue or extreme exhaustion without a reason
- Weight loss
- Inability to get enough breath or catch their breath
- Chest pain
- Chronic cough, usually dry but can be accompanied by white mucus or sputum, sometimes
These symptoms occur more frequently when the disease causes significant limitations in lifestyle and activity, affecting both the person’s physical and mental health.
What Is the Cause of Restrictive Lung Disease?
There is a variety of causes for restrictive lung disease, which include:
- Sarcoidosis, an autoimmune disorder
- Neuromuscular diseases, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or muscular dystrophy
- Interstitial lung disease, such as idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis
- Obesity, including obesity hypoventilation syndrome
How Do You Treat Restrictive Lung Disease?
The problem with restrictive lung disease is that it is progressive, which means it has the tendency to worsen over time, and that’s why treatments can vary from person to person. In some cases, the person needs oxygen therapy in which the healthcare professionals deliver oxygen to the patient’s lung to help maintain blood oxygen levels.
In more severe cases, lung transplant, corrective surgery may be needed, and stem cell therapy might be optimal.
However, medication can commonly be used to treat this condition, such as:
- anti-scarring medication, like nintedanib or pirfenidone
- Other anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive medications
Unfortunately, the majority of restrictive lung conditions synonymous with scarring, thickening, or lack of elasticity are permanent. There are ways, however, to reduce the effects of restrictive lung diseases or their effect. Doing exercises at home or making some changes to your lifestyle have been shown to reduce the symptoms’ severity.
Patients are usually encouraged to follow these recommended methods:
- Visualized meditation and relaxation such as yoga
- Breathing exercises
- Quit smoking
- Stay away from environments with irritants, toxins, or allergens that may worsen your condition
- Level walking
Sticking closely to your healthcare plan and following certain improvements in your lifestyle will help relieve the symptoms of restrictive lung disease and increase an individual’s quality of life.
Also, getting a personal health tracker such as Hyfe App is one of the best ways to improve your condition. The application implements AI technology to record, keep track and monitor your health every time you cough.
Have you ever heard of restrictive lung disease? Let us know your story in the comments below!
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