If IPF is suspected, diagnosis can be challenging but a multidisciplinary approach involving a pulmonologist, radiologist and pathologist expert in intestinal lung disease has been shown to improve the accuracy of IPF diagnosis.
>>>Recognizing IPF in clinical practice can be challenging as symptoms often appear similar to those of more common diseases, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and congestive heart failure.
The key issue facing clinicians is whether the presenting history, symptoms (or signs), radiology, and pulmonary function testing are collectively in keeping with the diagnosis of IPF or whether the findings are due to another process.
It has long been recognized that patients with ILD related to asbestos exposure, drugs (like chemo-therapeutic agents or nitrofurantion), rheumatoid arthritis and scleroderma/systemic sclerosis is difficult to distinguish from IPF.
Other differential diagnostic considerations include interstitial lung diseases related to mixed connective tissue diseases, advanced sarcoidosis, chronic hypersensitivity pneumonitis, pulmonary Langerhan’s cell histiocytosis and radiation-induced lung injury.
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