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Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is one of the most common entities of the family of disorders known as the interstitial lung diseases. It is a chronic, progressive, and often-fatal disease with a median survival time of 3 to 5 years. In 2014 the US Food and Drug Administration approved pirfenidone and nintedanib, two antifibrotic agents for the treatment of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. Because these are the only drugs approved that can alter the course of this rare but fatal disease, this article reviews the major studies that led to the approval of these drugs and examines the indications for treatment and the expected outcomes of therapy.