Farmer's Lung Treatment & Management

Updated: Oct 19, 2020
  • Author: Laurianne G Wild, MD, FAAAAI, FACAAI; Chief Editor: Zab Mosenifar, MD, FACP, FCCP  more...
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Approach Considerations

Systemic corticosteroid administration and avoidance measures constitute the primary treatment for farmer's lung. Patients may decrease activity because of cough and dyspnea on exertion. In a patient with acute farmer's lung, pulmonary function improves once antigen exposure is eliminated. Between episodes of acute disease, activity may be unlimited.

In patients who develop progressive fibrosis, lung transplantation should be considered. [20]


Long-Term Monitoring

Follow-up care should include routine spirometry with lung volumes and diffusion capacity, arterial PO2 and arterial-alveolar gradient assessment, and chest radiographs. Consider high-resolution CT scans of the chest to seek resolution of infiltrates or presence of ground-glass opacities that may indicate a need for further treatment with corticosteroids and/or continued insult to the lungs by antigen exposure.