Interstitial lung disease (ILD) is a progressive lung disorder with no effective treatment. Oxygen is often used to relieve symptoms at the end of life, but the evidence supporting oxygen use in these patients is based on limited data from other diseases. The lack of data on the benefits of oxygen in patients with ILD has resulted in uncertain criteria for its use and limited access to this potentially important medication.
My proposed research includes a detailed evaluation of the clinical, biological, and prognostic impact of oxygen in patients with ILD. My main objectives are to determine (1) the rate of progression and prognostic significance of low oxygen levels in patients with ILD, (2) the clinical and biological benefits of night-time oxygen in patients with ILD, and (3) the impact of oxygen on the use of medical services in patients with ILD and other forms of chronic lung disease.
This research will provide a thorough understanding of the role of oxygen in patients with ILD. These findings will inform patients, physicians, and policy makers on the appropriate use of oxygen in this setting, with additional components of this research that are aimed at identifying potential mechanisms of ILD worsening.