Depending on the severity of asbestosis, you may be prescribed one or multiple treatments
Though asbestosis is an irreversible disease, there are treatment options that slow down the progression of the disease. Medications and breathing treatments are the most common treatment methods, and at times surgery may also be considered. All the treatment methods for asbestosis are palliative, which means that the treatment is directed to improve the quality of life of the patient and may not cure the disease.
Your doctor is likely to prescribe inhalers and certain medications such as aspirin and bronchodilators to help with breathing difficulty and discomfort that develops in asbestosis. In some cases, a humidifier, oxygen therapy, chest percussion, and postural drainage may be needed to help with the symptoms such as chest tightness, congestion, and difficulty in breathing. In severe conditions that do not respond well to medications, surgery for removal of the scar tissue may be recommended.
The treatment options for asbestosis are enlisted below:
- Medications: Bronchodilators (inhalers) to relax muscles of the airway, Aspirin, and Tylenol to reduce chest pain and inflammation, and Guaiphenesin to thin down the airway secretions.
- Supplemental Oxygen therapy: This makes breathing easy and intake of oxygen better.
- Surgery: Surgery may be recommended in some cases to provide pain relief and relieve symptoms. Thoracentesis, a surgical procedure that drains excess fluid from the lungs helps release pressure within the lungs and make breathing easier.
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