Treatment for Cystic Fibrosis Symptoms

Children with Cystic Fibrosis in Covington, Kentucky (KY)

Cystic fibrosis is a genetic disease that leads to regular infections of the lungs and limited ability to breathe over time. This occurs due to a defective gene that produces a thick mucus buildup in the pancreas, lungs, and additional organs. Within the lungs, the mucus is able to clog the airways and hold bacteria that lead to infections, lung damage, and even respiratory failure. The presence of mucus in the pancreas keeps the digestive enzymes in the body responsible for breaking down food and absorbing necessary nutrients from properly functioning.

There are a multitude of symptoms those with cystic fibrosis may experience. They can suffer from persistent coughing, wheezing or shortness of breath, and recurrent lung infections including bronchitis or pneumonia. They may have skin that tastes extremely salty as well as an inability to grow or gain weight despite having a good appetite. They can also experience frequent bulky, greasy stools or trouble with bowel movements. Males may also suffer with infertility.

This is a complex disease with which the severity of symptoms varies from person to person. Several factors, including the age of diagnosis, are able to affect the individual’s wellbeing and the course of the disease. Those with cystic fibrosis have a greater chance of getting lung infections due to the accumulation of mucus, which is a perfect environment for germs to thrive and multiply. Minimizing exposure to germs is the top priority for people with the condition. Excessive amounts of mucus in the pancreas stops the body from absorbing food and key nutrients, which leads to malnutrition and poor growth. To combat this, children must consume a minimum of 3,000 calories a day and adults must consume 7,000-10,000 calories every day. While advancements in treatments have been able to extend the lives of sufferers, there is still no known cure.

Treatment is individualized to cater to each person’s unique circumstances. Individuals must complete a combination of different therapies every day. Airway clearance helps loosen and eliminate thick mucus that can collect in the lungs. Some techniques for this method require help from family, friends, or respiratory therapists. Manual chest physical therapy has the helper pound on six specific spots on the back and chest of the individual with cystic fibrosis to vibrate loose the mucus. A popular option for airway clearance is to use an inflatable vest. Inhaled medicines are able to thin the mucus or open up the airways. The medicine is offered in a mist or aerosol form that is inhaled through a nebulizer. Antibiotics are included in the treatment so as to fight off lung infections. Individuals may take pancreatic enzyme supplement pills to enhance the absorption of important nutrients. Multivitamins are commonly taken by cystic fibrosis sufferers as well.

At RSVP Home Care, we specialize in providing respiratory services and medical equipment to medically complex children. We offer the highest quality of home healthcare items, supplies and services for clients. It is our goal to improve the lives of every client. We are located in Covington, KY and provide service to Northern KY and Cincinnati. Call us today to learn more about our medical services.