Acute Interstitial Pneumonitis.
In Lehman’s terms:
It’s a lung disease. This particular lung disease begins to put holes in your lungs that your body attempts to repair by building scar tissue in place of your lung tissue that used to be there. After a while, AIP will continue to rip holes into your lungs, and your body will continue to try to repair itself with scar tissue. Eventually there is so much scar tissue built up in your lungs that you have no space for air – and can no longer breathe by yourself, and often leads to not being able to breathe at all.
Currently, the only real attempt to delay the disease, or prolong your your life is by pumping steroids into your body. If your body doesn’t respond to the steroids, your only other real chance at survival is a lung transplant; which you can you undergo if you’re physically healthy enough – so trying for the transplant early is probably a good idea, if you come to find you have AIP.
However, the thing about the lung transplant – and why my mom decided against it – is you have a 50% chance at survival, and if you do, you’ll have approximately a 5-year life expectancy. My mom was holding out hope that the steroids would work, and believed in herself to be strong enough to get back to a certain level of physical strength able to live a somewhat normal life again.
And she was indeed a strong woman.
No one knows where it comes from. No one knows how to treat this disease properly. And there is no cure as of now. For a more professional understanding about this disease, and a survivors story, click on the links below.