Cystic Fibrosis

Cystic fibrosis is one of the most widespread fatal genetic diseases in the United States. A specific flawed gene triggers this scourge of infancy and childhood and causes a cascade of life-threatening symptoms. Thick, glue-like mucus seriously obstructs breathing passages, making effortless breathing impossible. Bacterial colonies develop and grow deep inside the lungs, leading to repeated severe lung infections. Dangerous digestive disorders prevent absorption of healthful nutrition, thus hampering normal growth and development. The ability to control symptoms becomes a matter of life or death. Until recently, most people with cystic fibrosis died in infancy or early childhood. With today's advances in treatment, however, many patients survive into their 20s and 30s and beyond. Cystic Fibrosis discusses this genetic disease, its history, current treatments, and how scientists are searching for a cure.