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Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine
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At the Interstitial Lung Disease Program, our multidisciplinary team includes lung specialists, chest radiologists and pathologists, thoracic surgeons and research scientists. We work together to:
Our program is headquartered in the Pulmonary Associates Clinic, located on the second floor of the Cox Building. For your first visit, please bring any past evaluations or test results involving your lungs. If you have any questions about this or any other aspect of your care, please call our clinic coordinator at 617-726-1721.
At your first visit, you will meet with the lung specialist who will direct your care. You can expect:
After your visit, our program's doctors will meet as a group to discuss your case, review your test results and compile recommendations. Your lung specialist may then need to schedule additional meetings and/or testing to diagnose your specific disorder and formulate a treatment plan.
Diagnosing the precise nature of your interstitial lung disease allows us to prescribe the most effective treatment plan. It also enables us to set realistic expectations about your prognosis, including quality of life, so you can put your condition into perspective.
Our program offers sophisticated tests that we use to diagnose and manage interstitial lung diseases, including:
In addition to test results, we look at factors such as age, overall health, medical history, tolerance for certain therapeutic options and personal preferences to determine your individualized treatment plan. We will always keep you and your referring doctor informed of our findings and treatment recommendations.
Common treatment options include:
Please note: Corticosteroids—the traditional prescription for many interstitial lung diseases—have not been proven to reverse these disorders. As a result, some patients may benefit from one of these options:
Interstitial lung diseases comprise a number of chronic lung conditions. All of these disorders involve fibrosis, or scarring, of the interstitium (the tissue between the air sacs of the lungs). This process destroys the tissue's ability to breathe and carry oxygen. As a result, patients often experience shortness of breath and are limited in carrying out daily activities.
The Interstitial Lung Disease Program specializes in diagnosing and treating the full spectrum of interstitial lung diseases, including:
Mass General has a long-standing research and clinical interest in interstitial lung diseases. Today, our program includes lung specialists, chest radiologists and pathologists, thoracic surgeons and research scientists whose focus is interstitial lung diseases.
The interdisciplinary nature of our team offers many benefits for patients. We have the multifaceted expertise to diagnose and treat the various forms of interstitial lung diseases. Equally important, we have the ability to address the complications of these disorders (e.g. pulmonary hypertension) that can greatly compromise quality of life. And patients have the convenience of receiving all their care in one hospital.
Our program is led by co-directors Leo Ginns, MD and Andrew Tager, MD. A member of the Pulmonary and Critical Care Unit since 1977, Dr. Ginns has conducted basic research in immunology of lung disease and clinical research in lung transplantation and advanced lung disease. He served as medical director of the Mass General Lung Transplant Program from 1990 until 2010, when he became director of our Center for Advanced Lung Disease.
Dr. Tager joined the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine in 1999 after completing a research fellowship investigating several lung diseases, including pulmonary fibrosis, asthma and cystic fibrosis. He since has focused on pulmonary fibrosis and in recent years has received international recognition for his work in identifying new pathways by which this disease may develop. His research today continues to be centered on understanding the causes of fibrotic lung diseases, such as idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.
Physicians and scientists in our program are working toward new advances for interstitial lung diseases for which current treatment options are limited. In addition to delivering exceptional clinical care, we offer patients the opportunity to participate in clinical trials of new therapies and scientific investigations into the causes of interstitial lung diseases.
As part of a world-class academic medical center, the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine is continually preparing the next generation of leaders in academic pulmonary and critical care medicine. Fellows in the Pulmonary (Lung) Fellowship Program receive clinical and research training in interstitial lung diseases and all other major pulmonary conditions.
Interstitial lung diseases are named after the tissue between the air sacs of the lungs called the interstitium - the tissue affected by fibrosis (scarring).
Sarcoidosis is a rare disease that results from inflammation.
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