Explaining Clubbing of Fingers and Toes in Pulmonary Fibrosis
Pulmonary fibrosis is a chronic lung disease where the tissue surrounding the air sacs in the lungs becomes scarred. This scarring, or fibrosis, makes it difficult for the body to get enough oxygen into the bloodstream. The common symptoms of pulmonary fibrosis include shortness of breath, persistent coughing, weight loss and loss of appetite, and chronic fatigue.
If a person has had pulmonary fibrosis for a long time without receiving treatment, the lack of oxygen in the blood may also lead to clubbing of the fingers and toes (digital clubbing).
Although the exact reason for clubbing is unknown, we know it occurs when pools of fluid appear at the ends of the fingers and toes creating a rounding effect. It usually occurs in stages, with the fingernails lifting from the nail bed first and then they enlarge and start to round. Find out more about digital clubbing here.
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