What is a Pulmonologist?
A pulmonologist is a medical specialist who specializes in the respiratory system. This system consists of all the organs, airways, tissues, and muscles that allow the body to take in oxygen and expel carbon dioxide.
Cardiologists and pulmonologists frequently work together to diagnose and treat patients' conditions, including emphysema, bronchitis, and TB.
Symptoms of several respiratory and cardiovascular disorders overlap, such as chest pain or breathing problems. The cardiovascular system may be impacted by COPD and interstitial lung disease, among other respiratory disorders. Together, the professionals choose the most effective course of action for the patient. Additionally, interdisciplinary teams of doctors, nurses, pathologists, and respiratory therapists collaborate on patients' treatment plans.
To assist in the diagnosis of respiratory disorders, pulmonologists use imaging tests and lung function testing.
If a patient exhibits persistent or aggravating respiratory symptoms, such as breathing problems, chest pain, or a cough that lasts more than three weeks, a doctor may recommend the patient see a pulmonologist.
- Interstitial lung disease, which is a group of conditions that affect the space and tissue within the lungs
- Interventional pulmonology, which uses multidisciplinary care to treat airway disorders, lung cancer, and pleural diseases (which affect the pleura, the membrane that surrounds your lungs)
- Lung transplantation as well as management before and after surgery
- Neuromuscular disorders, which refers to conditions that result in respiratory muscle failure
- Obstructive lung disease, which involves airway narrowing or obstruction
- Sleep-disordered breathing
Centers & Institutes
Healthcare Delivery by Pulmonologists in the US
Internal medicine's subspecialty of pulmonary medicine focuses on the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the respiratory system, including those of the lungs, upper airways, thoracic cavity, and chest wall. Although general internists and other specialized healthcare experts handle the majority of common respiratory issues, internists who concentrate in pulmonary medicine (often referred to as "pulmonologists") are frequently asked to assist with the diagnosis of unidentified illnesses and the management of difficult, unusual, or complex respiratory diseases.
From 2020 through 2030, the total number of physicians and surgeons, including pulmonologists, is anticipated to increase at a slower-than-average 3 percent yearly rate.
The need for pulmonologists will rise as the population gets older and more middle-aged, which will result in a spike in respiratory illnesses like pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and other ailments that can harm the lungs permanently or limit lung function.
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The material presented above is only meant to be informative and is not intended to take the place of advice from your doctor or another health care practitioner. We advise you to talk to your provider about any questions or issues you may have.