Q. How to identify IPF?

Answered by
Dr. Sumit Srivastava
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on May 19, 2016 and last reviewed on: Mar 04, 2020

Hello doctor,

I was diagnosed with IPF last week. My two x-rays, two lung function tests and HRCT scan showing that I had scarring. But I am confused, because I feel better than I have felt in 10 years. I have always smoked and had cough for years. I have been on a diet and have lost one stone so far. I have been doing some tests at home such as at rest I can hold breath for 1 minute 25 seconds with relative ease. Breaths per minute sitting at rest are 15 and my blood oxygen levels at rest are between 95 to 99%. Running up and down stairs three times my blood oxygen levels drop to around 91 to 92% and it rises to 95 to 96% in less than a minute. When I wake up in the morning my blood oxygen levels have been around 86% rising to 92 to 94% in around two to three minutes. The other thing is that when I had my second lung function test five months ago I was at the end of a cold or flu. I did mention this to the consultant. Do you think I could have been misdiagnosed? Is it worth me asking for a second opinion? Please guide.

Dr. Sumit Srivastava

General Medicine Internal Medicine


Welcome to icliniq.com.

  • IPF (idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis)  is a chronic, progressive and idiopathic disease. It is usually seen in old age.
  • In this lungs become fibrosed, thickened and stiff. So, all capacities are reduced and due to this oxygenation is hampered.
  • Your home tests are within normal limits, but they do not exclude IPF which is diagnosed based on HRCT (high-resolution computed tomography) and other relevant tests.
  • Cold or flu will not lead to scarring of lung tissue. Definitive diagnosis of IPF is made only after biopsy.
  • The main stay of treatment for IPF is intravenous or oral steroid for a period of six weeks that may be overlapped with Cyclophosphamide.

For further information consult an general practitioner online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/general-practitioner

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