Survey of Physician's Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices Regarding Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis in Turkey
Kumbasar, Ozlem Ozdemir
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OBJECTIVES: The aim of this study is to evaluate the approaches of Turkish pulmonologists to the diagnosis and treatment of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) in daily clinical practice. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A questionnaire containing 38 questions about the IPF diagnosis and treatment was given to pulmonologists between January 22 and 29, 2018, and the data of 158 physicians who responded to the questionnaire were evaluated. RESULTS: This survey showed that the mean number of patients that physicians followed up and managed annually was 8.3 and 5, respectively. The mean symptom duration before the diagnosis was 9-12 months. Patients were seen on average by three physicians prior to confirmed diagnosis. Almost 80% of the physicians have an opportunity to access a pathologist and radiologist specialized in IPF. However, only 26% of them have an opportunity to access regular multidisciplinary meetings. Although antifibrotics were the most commonly prescribed drugs, approximately 10% of patients were prescribed steroids, N-acetylcysteine, and immunosuppressants. Most of the physicians (81%) were aware of international guidelines; however, the Turkish Thoracic Society IPF Diagnosis and Treatment Consensus Report was read by only 41% of them. CONCLUSION: This survey may lead to the IPF awareness in Turkey, and it may help to close the gaps regarding the diagnosis and treatment.