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Cystic Fibrosis

What Is Cystic Fibrosis?

Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a genetic disorder that primarily affects the lungs, but can also affect other organs such as the pancreas, liver, and intestines. Although there is no cure for CF, there are a variety of treatments available to manage the symptoms and complications of the disease. Early diagnosis and management of CF can help improve outcomes and quality of life for people with this condition. Get in touch with us to consult our leading medical experts.

What Are the Symptoms Of Cystic Fibrosis?

Cystic fibrosis symptoms vary, ranging from mild to severe. The most common symptom is a persistent cough that produces thick mucus. Other respiratory symptoms of cystic fibrosis include -

  • Wheezing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Recurring lung infections
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhoea
  • Poor weight gain due to malabsorption of nutrients
  • Foul-smelling, greasy stools
  • Poor weight gain and growth
  • Intestinal blockage, particularly in newborns (meconium ileus)
  • Chronic or severe constipation

What Are the Causes Of Cystic Fibrosis?

Cystic fibrosis is caused by mutations in the CFTR gene, which results in them malfunctioning. This can lead to the buildup of thick, sticky mucus in the lungs and other organs. One of the risk factors for cystic fibrosis is heredity and so, it can run in the families. 

Cystic fibrosis (CF) is an autosomal recessive disorder, which means that a person must inherit two copies of the mutated CFTR genes (one from each parent) in order to develop the disease. If a person inherits only one copy of the mutated gene, they are considered a carrier and usually does not have any symptoms.

When To Consult A Doctor For Cystic Fibrosis?

Get in touch with a doctor if your child shows symptoms of cystic fibrosis which do not get better with time. Since cystic fibrosis is caused due to genetic mutation, heredity is a major risk factor. So, consult a doctor if you or your child is coughing up blood, have chest pain or difficulty breathing, or have severe stomach pain and distention.

How Is Cystic Fibrosis Diagnosed?

Cystic fibrosis can be diagnosed through a variety of tests such as 

  • Blood tests
  • Sweat test
  • Genetic testing
  • Pulmonary function tests

The sweat test measures the amount of salt in a person’s sweat, which is usually elevated in people with CF. Genetic testing can identify specific mutations in the CFTR gene, which can confirm a diagnosis of CF. Pulmonary function tests measure a person’s lung function and can help assess the severity of the disease.

What Are The Treatment Options For Cystic Fibrosis?

While there is no cure for cystic fibrosis, the doctor may recommend a variety of treatment options to manage the symptoms and complications of the disease. Here are some standard treatment options to manage cystic fibrosis - 

  • Airway clearance therapy - which involves techniques to help clear mucus from the lungs. This can include chest physiotherapy, inhaled medications, and devices such as a vibrating vest. 
  • Medications - such as antibiotics are often used to treat lung infections along with other medications to manage digestive symptoms and other complications. 
  • Pulmonary rehabilitation includes encouraging people to maintain a healthy diet, exercise regularly, and avoid exposure to respiratory infections.
  • Surgical intervention - which is recommended to treat the primary cause of CF. This includes several methods like 
    • Nasal and sinus surgery
    • Oxygen therapy
    • Noninvasive ventilation
    • Feeding tube
    • Bowel surgery
    • Lung transplant
    • Liver transplant

Why Choose CMRI for Treatment Of Cystic Fibrosis in Kolkata?

The Calcutta Medical Research Institute (CMRI) is one of the largest multispecialty hospitals in Kolkata. Our hospital is equipped with state-of-the-art technology, revolutionising the healthcare industry for the best surgical outcomes. 

In addition, CMRI has several eminent specialists, doctors and healthcare providers of national and international reputations for comprehensive and personalised treatment. CMRI provides patient-centric care and empathy from internationally trained nurses to ensure holistic care for patients seeking treatment for cystic fibrosis. Here are a few advantages of choosing CMRI for cystic fibrosis treatment- 

  • Highly qualified and experienced doctors
  • 440-bed capacity along with cutting-edge technology and the latest medical equipment
  • Hygienic and patient-friendly infrastructure
  • Thorough screening and diagnosis
  • Transparent Pricing Structure for cost-effective treatment
  • Patient-centric, high-quality care for a high success rate
  • Pain management and palliative care
  • Complete and coordinated care for patients with all types of cancers.


Can people with cystic fibrosis have children?

Yes, most people with cystic fibrosis, have a healthy pregnancy. However, the risk of passing the mutated genes to the offspring is really high. Therefore, it is important to discuss your condition with the doctor before planning pregnancy.

How does cystic fibrosis affect sweat glands?

Cystic fibrosis is caused by a faulty gene that controls the movement of chloride and water into and out of cells. People with cystic fibrosis tend to sweat more. This sweat contains high chloride levels, which can crystallise into salt visibly on the skin.

Is cystic fibrosis polygenic?

Cystic fibrosis is regarded as oligogenic than polygenic which means they involve only a relatively small number of genes.

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