Free ‘Take a Deep Breath’ conference April 9 offers information about serious lung diseases

Regional Campus in Laredo

Media contact: Rosanne Fohn, (210) 567-3026, fohn@uthscsa.edu

On-site contact: Gladys Keene, M.D., regional dean, (956) 523-7400

WHAT:            The public is invited to a free, educational event focusing on lung disease. The conference, “Take a Deep Breath,” is part of the Stay Healthier Longer Series presented each spring by the UT Health Science Center San Antonio’s Regional Campus in Laredo.

WHERE:          Regional Campus of the UT Health Science Center San Antonio, 1937 E. Bustamante

WHEN:            Saturday, April 9. 8 a.m. to 10 a.m.: Healthy tips and hands-on demonstrations of physical, occupational and Wii therapy; tai chi; home gardening; Clean Air & Clean Lungs environmentally friendly home program; maintaining healthy teeth; and healthy choices for eating

10-10:30 a.m.: Media Interviews with Anoop Nambiar, M.D.

10:30 a.m.-noon: Dr. Nambiar’s presentation on interstitial lung disease.

WHO:              Anoop Nambiar, M.D., is an assistant professor in the Division of Pulmonary Diseases & Critical Care Medicine at the UT Health Science Center San Antonio. He sees patients at UT Medicine San Antonio, the clinical practice of the university’s School of Medicine.

In addition, Dr. Nambiar is founding director of UT Medicine’s Interstitial Lung Disease/Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (ILD/IPF) Clinic and director of the university’s Interstitial Lung Disease Program.

The program recently was selected to join the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation’s PFF Care Center Network. The network recognizes more than 40 Centers of Excellence in the U.S. that embrace a multidisciplinary approach to accurate diagnosis and optimal clinical care.

The centers participate in clinical research to develop newer, safer and better therapies, and provide high-quality education to health care providers. The centers also engage in community outreach to improve the lives of patients with interstitial lung diseases and pulmonary fibrosis.

Background: Interstitial lung diseases are a large group of chronic lung disorders, including pulmonary fibrosis, which may cause inflammation and/or scarring of the lungs. There are many different potential causes, such as smoking, radiation and chemotherapy treatment for cancer, some heart medications and antibiotics, as well as occupational and environmental exposure to asbestos, wood and metal dust, mold and bird feathers.

When no cause can be identified, the disease is called idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, an irreversible, progressive disease with a worse prognosis than many common cancers. A timely and accurate diagnosis is essential but may be challenging, since the disease is rare and the symptoms ― shortness of breath and cough ― are common to aging, heart disease and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

A comprehensive, multidisciplinary approach to diagnosis and management is critical, and is only available at ILD Centers of Excellence. In 2014, the FDA approved the first two IPF drugs for treatment, but they only slow down lung function decline and do not stop or reverse fibrosis. More clinical research is needed to develop safer and better therapies for IPF.

 



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