Pirfenidone is effective in treating idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, according to PubMed. Studies show that the antifibrotic substance hinders progression of the disease by minimizing amounts of TNF-? and other cytokines that cause inflammation, suppressing elements of profibrotic growth, and decreasing oxidative stress and lipid peroxidation.
As of 2015, clinical trials show that pirfenidone is safe and that patients tolerate it well, notes PubMed. Some patients experienced side effects such as anorexia, nausea and skin rashes caused by sensitivity to sunlight. The long-range safety and usefulness of pirfenidone and its effect on patient survival rates are still unknown, but it is viewed as an important advancement in the treatment of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.