Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD)

Presents with chronic dyspnea on exertion, maybe a slight cough.  Minimal physical findings may include fine rales at posterior & lateral bases, but usually lungs are clear.

Chest X-ray may note “reticular” or “nodular” “opacities,” or “honeycombing,” usually bilaterally, but perhaps only in certain zones of each lung.

PFTs are key, reveal restrictive abnormalities and a decreased DLCO.  Image of choice is a high-resolution chest CT.  Lots of possible etiologies, usually requiring biopsy to distinguish.

See postings Chronic Dyspnea – 1 and Chronic Dyspnea – 2 (re: PFTs).