What are the symptoms of cystic fibrosis?
Since cystic fibrosis can affect multiple bodily functions, including those in the respiratory and digestive systems, there are a wide variety of symptoms a person may experience, such as:
- Difficulty breathing
- Shortness of breath
- Frequent lung or sinus infections
- Chest tightness
- Chronic cough
- Greasy stools
- Difficulty with bowel movements
- Chronic diarrhea
- Chronic constipation
- Stomach pain
- Clubbed toes or fingers
- Low body weight
- Delayed growth
- Joint pain
What are the risk factors of cystic fibrosis?
Cystic fibrosis is a genetic condition, and it is a recessive disease, which means that people can only get it if both parents are carriers of mutated genes. If a person only gets one mutated gene from their parents, they are a cystic fibrosis carrier, but they do not have the disease.
If you have a family history of cystic fibrosis and are thinking about having a child, consider asking your doctor for carrier tests for you and your partner.
What treatments are available for cystic fibrosis?
Currently, there is no cure for cystic fibrosis. However, our board-certified pulmonologists work with patients to develop customized treatment plans to help manage the symptoms. These plans may include:
- Medications to thin the mucus
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
- Pulmonary rehabilitation
If you or a loved one is experiencing symptoms of cystic fibrosis, schedule a visit with a St. Joseph Health pulmonologist today.