What Are the Symptoms of Chronic Pneumonitis?


Quick Answer

Symptoms of chronic pneumonitis include weight loss, fatigue, loss of appetite and shortness of breath, according to Mayo Clinic. If left untreated, chronic pneumonitis can cause scarring of the lungs.

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Full Answer

Lung function tests and computerized topography scans help lung specialists and pathologists diagnose patients suffering from chronic pneumonitis, states MedicineNet. Because prolonged exposure to environmental materials such as mold spores, fungus, and pigeon or goose droppings can cause chronic pneumonitis, pathologists must also learn more about a patient's hobbies or work history to make a proper diagnosis.

The medications and treatments used to treat chronic pneumonitis include corticosteroids and oxygen therapy, according to Mayo Clinic. Corticosteroids help reduce inflammation in the lungs, but prolonged use can cause osteoporosis or other types of infections. Oxygen therapy requires patients to wear an oxygen mask for a certain amount of time when experiencing shortness of breath.

Identifying the environmental risk factors that cause chronic pneumonitis can help prevent additional onsets, MedicineNet explains. Patients should seek the advice of an experienced pathologist who can make a diagnosis based on CT scan, lung function and blood test results while taking into consideration environmental risk factors. An experienced pathologist can also rule out other health issues, such as cancer or lung infection, in order to properly diagnose and treat chronic pneumonitis.

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