Approach to interstitial lung disease associated with systemic sclerosis—A survey to pulmonologists and rheumatologists in Colombia

Javier Leonardo Galindo, Olga Milena García, Diana Rocío Gil, Luis Javier Cajas, Emily Rincón-Álvarez, Manuela Rubio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Interstitial lung disease is a leading cause of mortality in patients with systemic sclerosis. Currently, there is a lack of consensus regarding screening, rescreening, diagnosis, and follow-up practices in interstitial lung disease associated with systemic sclerosis (SSc-ILD) in Colombia. Methods: A structured survey focused on clinical practices in patients with SSc-ILD was conducted. Members of the Asociación Colombiana de Neumología y Cirugía de Tórax (Asoneumocito) and the Asociación Colombiana de Reumatología (Asoreuma) were invited to participate from March 2023 to May 2023. Results: We surveyed 51 pulmonologists and 44 rheumatologists. Overall, 51.6% reported having access to multidisciplinary team discussion in ILD. Among the 95 participants, 78.9% would routinely perform a high-resolution computed tomography scan of the chest once a diagnosis of systemic sclerosis was established. This practice is more frequent among rheumatologists (84.1%) than among pulmonologists (74.5%). Approximately half of the participants would rescreen patients annually with computed tomography scan (56.8%) if baseline images were negative. Spirometry (81.1%), diffusing capacity of the lung for carbon monoxide (80.0%), and 6-min walk test (55.8%) were the most frequently performed tests upon diagnosis of systemic sclerosis. During follow-up, participants would consider repeating pulmonary function tests mostly every 6 months. Conclusions: Screening of SSc-ILD is high among pulmonologists and rheumatologists. Decision-making on diagnosis and follow-up is similar between specialties, but there are variations in their frequency and indications. Further research is needed to evaluate how to adapt recommendations for assessing SSc-ILD in different settings.

Translated title of the contributionAbordaje de la enfermedad pulmonar intersticial asociada a esclerosis sistémica. Una encuesta a neumólogos y reumatólogos en Colombia
Original languageEnglish
JournalReumatologia Clinica
StateAccepted/In press - 2024


  • Diagnosis
  • Follow-up
  • Interstitial lung disease
  • Screening
  • Systemic sclerosis


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