Interstitial Lung Disease Specialist

Michael N. Newton MD

Pulmonology & Sleep Specialists located in Tampa, FL

If you have an underlying inflammatory disease, you may be at increased risk for interstitial lung disease. To minimize the scarring and damage to your lungs, Michael Newton MD, offers comprehensive diagnostic and treatment services for interstitial lung disease at the Tampa, Florida, office. Dr. Newton focuses on your care for slowing the disease’s progression and ensuring you can breathe well at all times. Call the office of Michael N. Newton MD, to schedule a diagnostic evaluation or book an appointment online today.

Interstitial Lung Disease Q & A

What is interstitial lung disease?

Interstitial lung disease, also known as pulmonary fibrosis, occurs when you have inflammation or scarring in your lungs. These issues affect the interstitium, which is the tissue that surrounds the air sacs, blood vessels, and airways of your lungs.

Scarring on your lung tissue reduces its flexibility, preventing you from breathing as well as you should. You may experience shortness of breath, fatigue, and a persistent dry cough because of interstitial lung disease.

What causes interstitial lung disease?

Interstitial lung disease can result from many different factors; there are over 200 potential causes of the condition.

Some of the most common causes of interstitial lung disease include:

  • Genetic background
  • Use of certain medications
  • Exposure to smoke or other environmental irritants
  • Autoimmune disease (sarcoidosis, rheumatoid arthritis)

If you smoke or have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), you may be at increased risk for developing interstitial lung disease.

Without proper treatment, you may develop interstitial lung disease complications that include pulmonary hypertension, heart failure, and respiratory failure.

How is interstitial lung disease diagnosed?

To determine if your symptoms relate to interstitial lung disease or another underlying condition, Dr. Newton may begin with blood testing to identify autoimmune disease.

Pulmonary function tests are also available to assess how much air you can move in and out of your lungs and at what force. To identify obstructions in your lungs, you may need computerized tomography (CT) scans or chest X-rays.

Dr. Newton uses the results of your test to create a treatment plan. If you have interstitial lung disease or other pulmonary conditions, he focuses on protecting your lungs’ health and your ability to breathe properly.

How is interstitial lung disease treated?

Once scar tissue develops in your lungs, you can’t treat it or reverse it. However, Dr. Newton may prescribe corticosteroids to reduce inflammation and slow down the progression of the disease.

You may also need additional medications to treat the underlying cause of interstitial lung disease, such as GERD, or make changes to medicines you take for other health issues.

In some cases, you may need supplemental oxygen to breathe easier and keep your blood oxygen levels elevated. Supplemental oxygen from a CPAP machine can also be effective in improving your quality of sleep.

If other treatments aren’t working, the last-resort treatment for severe interstitial lung disease is a lung transplant. Dr. Newton can discuss your options for a transplant and strategies for managing your condition throughout all phases of your treatment.

To schedule a diagnostic evaluation for interstitial lung disease, call the office of Michael N. Newton MD, or book an appointment online today.