Q. Is it possible to diagnose pulmonary fibrosis using chest x-ray?

Answered by
Dr. Hardik Tusharkant Bambhania
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Sep 05, 2018

Hi doctor,

I have been coughing since three weeks. My cough has changed from a dry hacking cough to a more productive cough with wheezing. I went to the doctor for the third time. So, my doctor decided to do a chest x-ray. Now along with a chest x-ray, the doctor advised me to have a CT scan, and breathing treatment. The doctor said to me to have an appointment with a pulmonologist. After reviewing my x-rays, the doctors informed me that I have pulmonary fibrosis. Is this indeed something that can be diagnosed by x-ray? I am taking Topamax 200 mg, Ambien 10 mg one tablet at night, Pro-Air inhaler, and Medrol dosepak.



Welcome to icliniq.com.

Pulmonary fibrosis is a chronic, and progressive disease of lungs with unknown etiology. Clinical, physiological and radiological criteria diagnose it. When there is a suspicion of pulmonary fibrosis, a chest x-ray is the first investigation. To confirm the diagnosis, a high-resolution CT scan is done, which can show the abnormalities found in the airways of the lungs.

An open lung biopsy is one of the useful methods. However, there may be variations in the histology, and this can make it difficult to diagnose it. In your case, the history of illness, physical findings of late wheezing after a productive cough, combined with specific findings on x-ray and CT scan have pointed to the diagnosis of pulmonary fibrosis. Kindly consult the pulmonologist before the worsening of the condition.

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