What is Cystic Fibrosis?
Cystic Fibrosis, or CF, is a genetic disease that affects the exocrine glands. These glands control the production of sweat, digestive fluids, and mucus. Cystic Fibrosis causes the body to produce thick mucus that blocks airways, prevents normal digestive functions, and leads to bacterial infections.
Cystic Fibrosis Facts:
- Cystic Fibrosis is a recessive gene mutation, meaning both parents must carry the defective gene for their children to have CF.
- Advances in newborn screening help diagnose cystic fibrosis at birth.
- CF patients produce heavy mucus that builds up and damages many organs in the body.
- In the past decade, research and medical advancements have led to an increase in life expectancy for CF patients.
- CF is most commonly found in the Caucasian population of the United States.
- A sweat test is the easiest way to test for CF.
- Common symptoms and complications among CF patients include:
- Cystic Fibrosis-Related Diabetes (CFRD)
- Chronic sinus and lung infection
- Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)
- Constant coughing; asthma, wheezing, and shortness of breath
- Bone Disease (fracture, osteopenia or osteoporosis)