Going out of breath every time you try to do something – right from picking up the regular grocery bag and walking back home, to opting for stairs instead of the lift, running a bit or going for an out of the blue swim – is not natural. Breathing problems tend to affect various aspects and aspirations of our daily life. They may occur due to multiple reasons such as heart conditions, anxiety and muscle weakness and/ or lung problems. Pulmonology is a subspecialty of internal medicine focused on resolving issues related to the latter. Although pulmonologists work across departments for comprehensive diagnosis and treatment, their expertise lies in providing consultation and diagnosis for illnesses and conditions that affect breathing and the lungs. Right from asthma to lung puncture due to a trauma/ accident, pulmonologists treat all of it.
Although we may not be aware, several muscles are used during respiration. These muscles – intercoastal, accessory, exhalation, and the diaphragm – work along with the key organs of our respiratory track – nose, mouth, pharynx, larynx, trachea, bronchi and lungs – to ensure its smooth functioning. The highly competitive and renowned team at Fortis hospital, Bangalore has had X years of experience in ensuring such smooth functioning for Y patients now. It is not for no reason that Fortis Bangalore has quickly raised ranks to become one of the leading medical facilities in India for diagnosis and treatment of lung pulmonary disorders. By using advanced world class medical technologies, their pulmonology team has been able to provide accurate in-clinic diagnosis and rehabilitation.
Any continued symptoms that point in the direction of abnormalities of the lungs and the respiratory track must be followed by a visit to a trusted general physician. They would perform medical exams and in turn redirect the patient to a pulmonologist for matters than need specialized diagnosis and care. Common systems include:
Difficulty in breathing
Coughing up blood/ mucus
Sudden and unexplained weight loss
Trouble in daily activities such as exercising due to breathing problems
The above symptoms may point towards one of the following conditions. Pulmonologists run a number of tests to narrow down on the exact root cause.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
Emphysema (damage to alveoli)
Infectious diseases of the respiratory system e.g. tuberculosis, bronchiectasis
Interstitial lung disease
Obstructive sleep apnea
Occupational lung diseases – brown lung disease, farmer’s lung, silicosis
Respiratory problems caused by cystic fibrosis
Although most of these conditions are directly linked to the functioning of the lung, their development is related to many neurologic and muscular conditions as well. This significantly impacts the overall oxygen intake of the body and can lead to serious concerns including brain damage.
With deep commitment to improving and saving lives, pulmonologists at Fortis Hospitals, Bangalore are often seen partnering with specialists from other disciplines to treat acute and chronic disorders of the respiratory and pulmonary vascular systems and design customized treatment plans. Basis diagnosis and proposed next steps, they may partner with teams from neurology, cancer surgery, sleep medicine, oncology, radiation, ENT, immunology and transplant team.
Subspecialties of pulmonology include:
Interstitial lung disease – Lung diseases marked by persistent inflammation and scarring
Interventional pulmonology – Airway disorders, lung cancer, and pleural diseases
Neuromuscular disease – Respiratory muscle failure
Obstructive lung disease – Airway narrowing or obstruction
Even though the Fortis team is proud of its rich legacy in the pulmonology department, they are dedicated to finding more accurate ways to determine diagnosis and better interpret the results. Their unwavered commitment to innovation, minimal invasion and continued research ensures access to advanced treatment options. Some of the diagnosis tools/ technologies leveraged basis such a holistic and inclusive approach include:
Balloon airway dilation
Bronchial thermoplasty (for severe asthma)
Chest tube and tunneled pleural catheter placement
Electromagnetic navigation bronchoscopy (ENB)
Endobronchial ultrasound, radial and linear (EBUS)
Endobronchial valve placement
Lung cancer screening
Medical thoracoscopy, pleural biopsy and pleurodesis
Percutaneous dilational tracheostomy
Tracheal and bronchial stent placement
Ultrasound guided thoracentesis and pleural manometry
Lung lavage and chest fluoroscopy
Apart from these tests, they also conduct chest ultrasounds, pulmonary function and pulse oximetry. In severe cases, pulmonologists further refer the patient to specialized surgeons to remove diseased parts of the lung or any other organ in the respiratory system. The Pulmonology department at Fortis Bangalore also provides lung cancer screening and assessment, sleep services conducted by qualified sleep technologists and treatments such as bronchial thermoplasty. They guide the patients (and their families as well) wrt dietary changes, new exercise regimes and ways to overcome challenges wrt the proposed lifestyle to ensure complete rehabilitation.
With 56 hospitals across the nation and over 10,000 beds, Fortis Healthcare Limited is a leading integrated healthcare delivery service provider in India. For over 26 years, Fortis Hospitals have been committed to the cause of getting people back to their lives faster and stronger.