NUH is host to the regional centre for interstitial lung disease (ILD) and the national lymphangioleiomyomatosis (LAM) centre, providing care for patients with ILDs from across the East Midlands and nationally for patients with LAM.
Interstitial lung diseases (ILDs) affect mainly the lung tissue (parenchyma) and include idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, asbestosis, sarcoidosis, connective tissue disease related lung diseases and hypersensitivity pneumonitis as well as rarer interstitial lung diseases including LAM.
IPF is the most common and most serious of the ILDs, affecting approximately 5,000 people in the UK, with survival rates worse than most cancers. It leads to progressive shortness of breath which is not usually noticeable at rest but severely limits any exertion such as walking very short distances. It also leads to a debilitating dry cough. At the moment therapies for IPF are limited but the Academic ILD Unit is a research-focused unit and access to new, or experimental, therapies are sometimes possible.
Other ILDs affect up to 10,000 people in the UK. These often have a better outlook than IPF but may require immunosuppressive therapy with specialist monitoring which is available through the dedicated ILD MDT.