A Short Note On Pulmonary Diseases And Conditions

932 WordsMar 13, 20174 Pages
Lymphangioleiomyomatosis (LAM) Pulmonary diseases and conditions have been present since the lungs were discovered by ancient doctors. From tuberculosis to COPD, our lungs are highly susceptible to illness. What causes these illnesses? Oftentimes, it’s environmental. The infectious particles in the air we breathe or materials we purposely inhale, ie. cigarettes, that make it through our bodies’ filters cause many of these problems. But for diseases like LAM, the cause is genetic. LAM is a rare lung disease characterized by abnormal growth of smooth muscle cells, especially in the lungs, lymphatic system, and kidneys. There are two forms of LAM, Sporadic LAM (S-LAM) and Tuberous Sclerosis LAM (TSC-LAM). The first type occurs for unknown…show more content…
One of these is pneumothorax, or collapsed lung. This can occur if the cysts rupture through the lining of an affected lung. The air that collects in the space between the lung and chest wall must be removed in order for the lung to be reinflated. Pleural effusions may also occur. This is where bodily fluids collect in the space between the lung and chest wall, and it can often cause shortness of breath due to the restricted room to expand. Many later sym ptoms emerge due to spreading of the tumors into other areas of the body. Sufferers may also experience blood in the urine due to the tumors spreading to the kidneys. Areas of the body may also begin to swell, such as the abdomen, legs, ankles, and feet. Many of these symptoms result in hospital visits, where sufferers are eventually diagnosed. But how is LAM diagnosed? Because this disease manifests in many different ways, it is sometimes difficult to diagnose. Sometimes, the difficulty of diagnosis is compounded by the fact that many of LAM’s symptoms are similar to other pulmonary diseases, such as asthma, emphysema, and bronchitis. Chest x-rays aren’t always sufficient to detect LAM, but chest CT scans can often detect the cystic structure of this disease. These scans often provide an accurate diagnosis, especially if other manifestations of the disease (e.g., benign tumors, fluid in the lungs, or even a collapsed lung) are present in the patient. In some circumstances, a lung biopsy is needed to provide the
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