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Cystic Fibrosis

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Description

Cystic fibrosis affects the body’s ability to move salt and water in and out of cells. This defect causes the lungs and pancreas to secrete thick mucus, blocking passageways and preventing proper function.

CF affects approximately 30,000 children and young adults in the United States, and about 3,000 babies are born with CF every year. CF primarily affects people of white northern-European descent; rates are much lower in non-white populations.

Many of the symptoms of CF can be treated with drugs or nutritional supplements. Close attention to and prompt treatment of respiratory and digestive complications have dramatically increased the expected life span of a person with CF. While several decades ago most children with CF died by age two, today about half of all people with CF live past age 31. That median age is expected to grow as new treatments are developed, and it is estimated that a person born in 1998 with CF has a median expected life span of 40 years.

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Description

Cystic Fibrosis Donations:

Make a donation today and create a brighter future for those living with cystic fibrosis and the people who care for them, or set up a regular gift to help us plan ahead and develop better treatments and, ultimately, a cure.

What is Cystic Fibrosis?

Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

Please send your donations today.

Cystic fibrosis is a life-threatening, genetic disease that causes persistent lung infections and progressively limits the ability to breathe.

In people with CF, a defective gene causes a thick, buildup of mucus in the lungs, pancreas and other organs. In the lungs, the mucus clogs the airways and traps bacteria leading to infections, extensive lung damage and eventually, respiratory failure. In the pancreas, the mucus prevents the release of digestive enzymes that allow the body to break down food and absorb vital nutrients.

Symptoms of CF

People with CF can have a variety of symptoms, including:

  • Very salty-tasting skin
  • Persistent coughing, at times with phlegm
  • Frequent lung infections including pneumonia or bronchitis
  • Wheezing or shortness of breath
  • Poor growth or weight gain in spite of a good appetite
  • Frequent greasy, bulky stools or difficulty with bowel movements
  • Male infertility

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