Ram Mishra of TCS Healthcare Services recently published an article on a rare lung disease called Diffuse Panbronchiolitis (DPB) in Respiratory Investigation, the journal of the Japanese Respiratory Society. Ram’s goal is to increase global recognition of this disease to decrease the rate of misdiagnosis and to increase the adequacy of treatment. Bronchi are the main airways into the lungs. The bronchi become smaller and are then considered bronchioles. The bronchioles then evolve into tiny air sacs called alveoli, which is where oxygen and carbon dioxide are exchanged. DPB is characterized by thickening and inflammation of the walls of the bronchioles, a disease that predominantly affects Asian populations. These changes produce nodules and are associated with production of large amounts of sputum.
The main treatment recommended for DPB is the use of antibiotics known as macrolides. Erythromycin is typically the first drug of choice. A different macrolide antibiotic as azithromycin may be used if erythromycin is not well-tolerated or if a person doesn’t improve after several weeks of therapy.