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Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease, or a disease that occurs when a person's own immune system mistakenly attacks the body’s tissues.
RA causes long-term inflammation of the tissues around the joints and other organs in the body.
Interstitial lung disease (ILD) is the most common disease, outside of the joints and bones, that causes rheumatoid arthritis and occurs most commonly in people with severe disease.
Doctors at the University of Pittsburgh Simmons Center for Interstitial Lung Disease at UPMC work closely with nationally renowned rheumatology specialists at the UPMC Arthritis and Autoimmunity Center to develop treatments for people with ILD associated with RA.
The two centers collaborate on a number of innovative clinical research studies to better define effective treatment options and identify biologic markers to monitor disease activity and treatment responses.
From our Health Library:Learn more about the Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care Medicine.
The diagnosis of interstitial lung disease (ILD) is often delayed in people with more severe arthritis because they're usually more limited by their joint di sease rather than their respiratory symptoms.
To determine a diagnosis, specialists at the University of Pittsburgh Simmons Center for Interstitial Lung Disease at UPMC will:
Other procedures may include:
From our Health Library:
Treatment regimens for interstitial lung disease (ILD) associated with rheumatoid arthritis vary.
Medical therapy of ILD associated with RA is complex and depends, in large part, on the pattern of lung scarring that accounts for the lung disease.
At UPMC, our specialists are dedicated to providing treatments that:
When the disease progresses, despite medical therapy, lung transplantation remains a viable option for some people.
UPMC’s Lung Transplantation Program is nationally renowned. Our experts have performed more than 1,400 lung transplants since the program’s inception.
Doctors at the University of Pittsburgh Simmons Center for Interstitial Lung Disease at UPMC and UPMC Arthritis and Autoimmunity Center work closely with members of the Lung Transplant team to refer patients for evaluation, when the time is right.
From our Health Library: