Category: Interstitial Lung Disease

What is Honeycombing in the Lungs? (Pulmonary Fibrosis)-Causes and Treatment

ABSTRACT

The human respiratory system consists of a network of tissues or organs, lungs are the primary organs of the respiratory system. Lungs are the paired organ located on either side of the heart of human beings. The prime function of the lungs involves the gaseous exchange between the atmosphere and the bloodstream, basically, oxygen is extracted and transferred into the bloodstream and in turn releasing the carbon dioxide from the blood to the external environment. But due to increased air pollution and some other factors can lead to the degradation of the normal function of the lungs. One of such diseases is pulmonary fibrosis. In this article, we’ll discuss in brief the disease and its best Ayurvedic management.

INTRODUCTION

Pulmonary fibrosis also known as honeycombing in lungs due to the radiological appearance of this disease and is defined as the condition which is characterised by presence of small cystic spaces with irregularly thickened walls composed of fibrous tissue in the lungs. Basically in pulmonary fibrosis, the tissue of lungs gets scarred, and lungs are unable to perform the normal functions efficiently. With increase in time, this condition gradually becomes worse and may ultimately lead to complete loss of function of lungs. Honeycomb cysts often predominate in the pleural/ sub pleural and peripheral regions of the lungs regardless of their cause.

SIGN AND SYMPTOMS

The common clinical features of lung fibrosis include shortness of breath especially on exertion, chronic dry cough, weakness and fatigue, chest discomfort and pain in chest and back regions, loss of appetite is followed by rapid loss of weight On auscultation, sometimes the fine cracked during inspiration can be heard on the base of lungs.

CAUSES

The causes of pulmonary fibrosis include environmental pollution, some medications, infections such as SARS infections, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, interstitial lung disease etc., and connective tissue diseases. Endogenous stimuli- dust, fumes, cigarette smoke, autoimmune conditions.
Exogenous stimuli- drug interactions, radiations and other diseases.

PATHOPHYSIOLOGY OF PULMONARY FIBROSIS (Cause of honeycombing)

Due to the overexposure of endogenous and exogenous stimuli, leading to microscopic lung injury, separated spatially and temporally and if these injuries remain intact lead to lung haemostasis, and when healed up it leads to gradual change in lung parenchyma with fibrotic tissue leading pulmonary fibrosis, which appear as honeycombs on radiological imaging. This progressive changes in the normal lung tissue with scarred one, resulting in the reduced oxygen diffusion capacity and increase in stiffness of chest and back region.

Pulmonary Fibrosis

DIAGNOSIS

  • The diagnosis of this condition may be based on symptoms, lung function tests, medical imaging and lung biopsy
  • Honeycomb lung is the classical radiological appearance with widespread fibrosis.
  • The terminal and respiratory bronchioles are dilated and thickened to produce cystic airspaces, giving this characteristic honeycomb appearance on chest x-ray.
  • High resolution CT may be required for proper visualisation of the abnormalities.

COMPLICATIONS

If proper management of this condition is not done it may lead to many several lifethreatining complications. These include pneumothorax, lung cancer, pulmonary hypertension and respiratory failure.

AYURVEDIC VIEW

In Ayurveda, the best correlation of this disease can be made with Kshatksheen janya shwas rog, (respiratory disorder as a result of healed pulmonary abscess).

The person who is regularly on inappropriate diet and unwholesome diet, excessive dry and following the trauma to the lungs or due to any infective cause, the vitiated tridosha got entered in the chest region causing severe pain in the chest, back and also passes blood in sputum (hemoptysis), leading to abscess formation in the lungs and also causing depletion of shukra and oaj (the supreme body tissue that can be correlated with hormones responsible for growth and reproduction and immunity) and leading to the condition called kshatksheen. This kshat ksheen, itself when healed, makes the progressive changing of normal to fibrosed tissues in the lungs leading to pulmonary fibrosis condition.

The common symptoms of kshatksheen include

Uroruk- Pain in chest, Shonitchardi- haematemesis, Kaaso-cough, due to the pulmonary abscess (urahkasht), and also the generalised symptoms such as Sraktmutratvum– Haemeturia, parshavprishtkatigreh- stiffness in chest, back and lumbar region and weight loss.

The bleeding when the tissue becomes fibrosed decreases but it leads to the gradual increase in breathing difficulty, exertional dyspnea and other such symptoms.

TREATMENT of Pulmonary Fibrosis

Planet Ayurveda Is The Best Emerging Manufacturing Hub Which Is Gradually Becoming The Global Distributor Of Herbal Formulations That Are Being Made On Ancient Ayurvedic Principles. The Products That Are Manufactured Here Are Under The Strict Supervision Of Our Expert Team Of Ayurvedic Doctors And Are Made With Ancient Time Tested Formulas.

Best Herbal Remedies as suggested by our experts for pulmonary fibrosis

  1. Praanrakshak Churna
  2. Vasaka Capsule
  3. Tulsi Capsule
  4. Shwas kuthar ras

Herbal Supplements for Pulmonary Fibrosis

Herbal Supplements for Pulmonary Fibrosis

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION

1. Praanrakshak Churna

This is a poly herbal prepration made by Planet Ayurveda’s team on the ancient Ayurvedic principles. The shwas roga have prodominaece of kapha and vata dosha. This churna is very much efficient in screeching out the collected kapha dosha along with the soothing effects on the vata dosha. The product is having expectorant and properties to enhance the lung functions. The ingredients of this formulation include Sirisha (Albizia lebbeck), mulheti (Glycyrrhiza glabra) and kantakari (Solanum xanthocarpum) etc.

Dosage– 1 teaspoon twice daily with equal amount of honey, after meals

2. Vasaka Capsules

These are the standardized extract of the vasa (Adhatoda vasica). Vasa is an amazing rejuvenating herb that helps in the prevention of infections of lungs and promoting the health of the lungs, it helps in getting rid of the excess congestion in the chest and also improves digestion. This herb enhances the blood purifying ability, and boosts up the immunity. These all factors make them both suitable and one of the best medicines for pulmonary fibrosis.

Dosage- 1 capsule two times daily with water after meals

3. Tulsi Capsules

Tulsi Capsules are made from the standardized extract of Ocimum sanctum. Tulsi is the best remedy to treat the respiratory difficulties used since ages. Moreover, tulsi is the abundant source of antioxidants such as eugenol that protects the lungs from free radicals. Due to its kapha shamak property, it aids in relieving the symptoms of pulmonary fibrosis.

Dosage- 1 capsule twice daily with water after meals

4. Shwas kuthar ras

The classical Ayurvedic formulation used for the shwas roga (respiratory ailments). This medicine is useful in chronic breathing difficulties and dyspnea on exertion along with the stiffness issues in the lungs. Shwas kuthar ras is the best herbomineral preparation for dissolving the fibrosed tissue (due to kapha) and helps in promoting the normal lung functions.

Dosage– 2 tablets twice daily after meals, for better results crush the tablets in half teaspoon of ginger juice, and consume it with 1 teaspoon of honey.

CONCLUSION

There is no treatment method available with the Allopathic medicine for this condition, they mostly focus on symptomatic treatment (pulmonary rehabilitation or oxygen therapy), whereas Ayurveda with an integrated approach of lifestyle and dietary modification along with the herbal formulations is the best way to manage the condition of  Pulmonary fibrosis.

What is Honeycombing of Lungs and its Best Alternative Treatment?

Honeycombing of Lungs

What is Honeycombing of Lungs?

Honeycombing of lungs is also called honeycomb lungs. It is a radiological feature, seen with extensive fibrosis. Cystic air spaces with wide walls appear in this disorder. These air spaces are formed of fibrous tissue and are variable-sized, and irregular. Honeycomb cysts usually happen in the pleural or sub-pleural and peripheral regions of the lung areas.

Honeycombing of Lungs

The enlarged and expanded respiratory bronchioles and terminals produce cystic airspace that provides the appearance of honeycomb in the lungs as a result of chest x-ray or High-Resolution Computed Tomography (HRCT). These modifications are non-significant and are generally seen in the end-stage of many Interstitial Lung Diseases (ILDs).

Honeycombing of Lung is Divided into Two Types:

  1. Microcystic Honeycombing
  2. Macrocystic Honeycombing

1. Microcystic Honeycombing

It is a visual descriptor on HRCT (High-Resolution Computed Tomography) or CT which represents very small cysts that occur in the sub-pleural region in the patient of interstitial lung disease. It is commonly associated with Non-Specific Interstitial Pneumonitis (NSIP). If the size of the cyst is below 4 mm it is considered as Microcystic honeycombing.

2. Macrocystic Honeycombing

When the size of cysts is bigger than 4 mm it is considered as Macrocystic honeycombing. It is the morphological type of honeycombing. It is commonly associated with Usual Interstitial Pneumonia (UIP).

Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD) is a huge group of disorders that cause lung scarring known as fibrosis which leads to lung stiffness making it troublesome to breathe.

Examples of ILD:

  1. Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
  2. Non-Specific Interstitial Pneumonitis (NSIP)
  3. Interstitial pneumonia
  4. Hypersensitivity Pneumonitis
  5. Usual Interstitial Pneumonia
  6. Sarcoidosis and Asbestosis

The specific cause of interstitial lung disease (ILD) is not known. This may be due to some factors like chemical exposure, several medicines, family history, and some other diseases such as collagen disease, etc. The lung diseases get worse over time and at the end stage of the disease, they show the honeycombing appearance which is the cystic airspace in the lungs.

If a person with chronic lung disease does not get proper treatment on time, it becomes more severe and is recommended for lung transplantation. So, if you want to prevent your lungs from diseases and becoming a honeycomb lung then you should go for an alternative treatment which can treat it in an effective manner without affecting your health further.

What is the Alternative Treatment to Prevent the Honeycombing of Lungs?

If any treatment cures the disease at its roots and produces many side effects, it cannot be a good treatment. Therefore, it is better to go for an alternative treatment i.e. natural treatment which includes herbs that not only control the symptoms of the disease but also treat the root of the disease. These herbs do not cause any side effects rather they are beneficial for the health in many other ways.

Herbs to Prevent Honeycombing of Lungs

  1. Vasaka: It is a very effective herb for respiratory and lung disorders (3).
  2. Curcumin: This herb possesses numerous properties such as antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, chemotherapeutic properties, etc. (2)
  3. Tulsi: The herb helps to clear the lungs by purifying the air and is useful in lung diseases, like Sinusitis, bronchitis, and nasal congestion, etc. (1)
  4. Ginger: It helps to relieve respiratory diseases.
  5. Mulethi: It acts as an expectorant and holds bronchodilator activities that help to clean the respiratory tract.

These herbs are very effective individually, and also give a synergistic effect when used in combinations. Therefore, they are used in herbal formulations that are not only, more effective but also 100% pure and natural, without any added chemicals or preservatives as served by Planet Ayurveda.

Alternative Treatment for Honeycombing of Lungs by Planet Ayurveda

All the products of Planet Ayurveda are formulated under the direct supervision of highly qualified Ayurvedic practitioners. The herbal products provided for the treatment of Honeycombing of lungs are:

  1. Vasaka Capsules
  2. Tulsi Capsules
  3. Praanrakshak Churna
  4. Shwas Kuthar Ras

Product Descriptions

1. Vasaka Capsules

These capsules consist of pure extract of Vasaka (Adhatoda vasica) herb. Vasaka capsules are very beneficial in the treatment of lung diseases. This herb has expectorant and bronchodilator activities that help to clean the respiratory channels and promotes the healthy functioning of the respiratory system. So, these capsules also help to prevent the lungs from Honeycombing associated with interstitial lung disease (ILD).

Dosage: 2 capsules twice daily with water after meals.

2. Tulsi Capsules

Tulsi capsules are prepared by the standardized extract of Tulsi (Ocimum tenuiflorum), also known as Holy Basil. It is a wonderful herb that has medicinal properties to manage respiratory and lung complications preventing the formation of cystic airspace (honeycomb) in the patient’s lungs. It also possesses soothing and calming properties that help in easy and smooth breathing. It is a great antioxidant that promotes the healthy functioning of the lungs.

Dosage: 1 capsule twice daily with plain water after meals.

3. Praanrakshak Churna

This formulation from Planet Ayurveda is a blend of amazing herbs useful in lung diseases. The herbs included are Vasaka (Adhatoda vasica), Shirish (Albizia lebbeck), Bharangi (Clerodandrum serratum), Anantmool (Tylphora asthmatica),  Mulethi (Glycyrrhiza glabra), Kantkari (Solanum xanthocarpum), and Twak (Cinnamomum zeylanica).  This holds antioxidant properties which help to repair the lungs’ tissues and also encourages the transfer of oxygen throughout the blood. Praanrakshak Churna improves the functioning of the lungs and prevents Honeycombing. It is also effective in managing various conditions like cough, sneezing, Sinusitis, Rhinitis and others.

Dosage: 1-2 teaspoons thrice a day with plain water after meals.

4. Shwas Kuthar Ras

Shwas Kuthar Ras is a wonderful Ayurvedic formulation. It is a mixture of many ingredients including Shuddha Gandhaka (Purified Sulphur), Shuddha Parada (A Purified Mercury), Tankana Bhasma (Borax), Shuddha Vatsanabha (Purified Aconitum ferox), Manashila (Purified Realgar),  Pippali (Piper longum), Shunti (Zingiber officinalis), and Maricha (Piper nigrum). This formulation is very effective in various lung diseases like asthma, chronic bronchitis, dyspnea, etc.

Dosage: 2 tablets twice a day, before or after food.

Conclusion

From the above information, it is concluded that Ayurvedic treatment is the best alternative treatment to prevent and treat the lung diseases and formation of honeycombing in the lungs. Planet Ayurveda offers the best herbal products that naturally manage the condition of the lungs and do not even cause any side effect.

Reference

  1. https://www.nhp.gov.in/Raihan-Tulsi_mtl
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17569221
  3. http://www.jocpr.com/articles/indian-traditional-herbs-adhatoda-vasica-and-its-medicinal-application.pdf