Diagnosis and management of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis: a statement

Chairs: Athol Wells & Venerino Poletti

Clinicians have struggled to apply the 2011 ATS/ERS/JRS/ALAT guideline for the diagnosis and management of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). In up to 50% of IPF patients, the diagnosis of IPF cannot be made without a surgical biopsy. However, it now appears that treatments used for alternative diagnosis may be actively damaging in IPF. 

Clinicians lack guidance on best management of this large patient sub-group. This and other areas of confusion, arising with the application of the guidelines, prompted a call by the majority of European IPF experts at a recent European-wide meeting for revisions to some guideline statements.

Also, patient focus groups have identified a number of key issues and further groups are now meeting in at least four European countries to produce a definitive list.
A Statement is therefore needed a) to build on the current IPF guideline by addressing areas of confusion; and b) to address key patient concerns about communication and empowerment.