CNRI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CNRI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Fibrosis in the lung. Light micrograph of lung tissue showing bands of fibrous tissue (dark) in interstitial pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). IPF is a condition in which the tissue surrounding the alveoli (air sacs) in the lungs, the interstitium, become inflamed, leading to the production of scar tissue. This reduces the lungs' capacity for gaseous exchange, leading to shortness of breath and, often, a cough. IPF has many causes, principally the inhalation of certain substances, such as coal dust or asbestos. Cigarette smoking also increases the chances of developing IPF. Treatment is aimed at curing the underlying cause. Magnification unknown.
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