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Anyone Experience Lung Problems?

Anyone can experience lung issues, but the risk is increased for those with RA. (Kelly writes about interstitial lung disease https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/?p=39645 for instance).

If you've gone through challenges with your lungs, it would be helpful for others to hear your story!



  1. Oh my, I’m seeing this just now and need to say YES I AM! It began November 2019. Mild cough, no big bother. My primary says ‘lungs sound great’ , no crackle or anything abnormal. My rheumatologist shows no interest of it being from methotrexate or Humira. Low dose CT, done annually because I am a former smoker, never shows concern. But the cough has become a nasty mess! ENT says ‘ it’s from GERD and breaking loose from smoking, 4 yrs AFTER quitting? I’m at my wits end! And this cough just may choke me to death.
    This article gives me new areas to explore.

    1. I just experienced something and I wonder if this could be your problem?
      I cough off and on but Im still a smoker. I had been having trouble choking on liquids and my GERD getting worse in the last year. The ENT Dr could see in her scope, that my vocal chords were inflamed. My ent ordered a swallow test and BOOM! They showed me my videos after testing and When I drink water, it tries to come back up or I choke on it. When I eat semi-solid food it goes down and stops at a certain point in my esophagus. I dont have a cough all the time but she also mentioned dysphasia , meaning the mucsles in my neck and throat are weak. Just curious if your problem could be something making your GERD worse? I never would have guessed that the ent would suspect dysphasia and order a swallow study!

    2. Hi . It must be scary when that happens, but I relief to finally have a diagnosis. Is there anything your doctor can do for you? Thinking of you and wishing you the best. - Lori (Team Member)

  2. I have the same issue - constantly bouncing from no cough, slight cough, to "I think I'm going to choke to death" cough. Sleeping sitting up because if I lay down.... I cough. Pulmonologist says lungs are clear..... but days later.... cough is back. It is a constant battle

    1. , ugh! That sounds pretty frustrating! Best, Erin, RheumatoidArthritis.net Team Member.

  3. I have had a constant battle with my lungs. Even had a VERY scary week when they found masses in my lungs through a CT scan that turned out to be RA nodules (or something akin to them). I am constantly battling a very nasty cough...which if I do not get under control quickly turns into bronchitis and eventually pneumonia. I have to ramp up my Prednisone to battle the lung inflammation which carries some pretty scary side effects of its own. It gets quite complicated at times. Regular chest x-rays and CT scans are a part of life.

    1. I have ILD or called Antisynthetase. I had this and one year later the RA began. . Joint pain. My disease also involves myositis. They also call this pulmonary fibrosis. I have a pulmonary dr and and rheumatoid dr. I take 5-7 mg of prednisone daily since 2006. My lungs are doing well. No coughing but must remain on prednisone. I take Orencia infusion for the RA pain. I think it’s working. My pulmonary dr prefers I do not take methotrexate as it can cause lung problems. I was in complete remission for 3 years ago in 2010 but had to take prednisone again bc the coughing began.
      I’m doing fairly well but often take an afternoon nap.

      1. , So you have had the lung problems for 15 years and you are still ticking along?

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