Pulmonary medicine specialists deal with the study, diagnosis, and treatment of diseases and disorders of the lungs and related passageways. These diseases can include:
- Lung cancer
- Pneumonia (inflammation of the lung tissue)
- Bronchitis (inflammation of the passageways from the windpipe into the lungs)
- Pleurisy (inflammation of the lining of the lungs and the chest cavity)
- Emphysema (in which lung tissue is destroyed, causing air to become trapped within the lungs, often accompanied by severe breathing problems)
Specialists in pulmonary medicine also perform bronchoscopy (direct examination of the trachea and bronchial passages with a flexible, lighted, tubelike instrument) and specialize in managing ventilators (artificial breathing machines).
The pulmonary medicine specialist's training is in internal medicine, which is followed by two years of specialized training in the diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary diseases and disorders.
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