Rationale: Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) and other idiopathic interstitial pneumonias (IIPs) have similar clinical and radiographic features, but their histopathology, response to therapy, and natural history differ. A surgical lung biopsy is often required to distinguish between these entities.
Objectives: We sought to determine if clinical variables could predict a histopathologic diagnosis of IPF in patients without honeycomb change on high-resolution computed tomography (HRCT).
Methods: Data from 97 patients with biopsy-proven IPF and 38 patients with other IIPs were examined. Logistic regression models were built to identify the clinical variables that predict histopathologic diagnosis of IPF.
Measurements and main results: Increasing age and average total HRCT interstitial score on HRCT scan of the chest may predict a biopsy confirmation of IPF. Sex, pulmonary function, presence of desaturation, or distance walked during a 6-minute walk test did not help discriminate pulmonary fibrosis from other IIPs.
Conclusions: Clinical data may be used to predict a diagnosis of IPF over other IIPs. Validation of these data with a prospective study is needed.