How does CF af­fect the res­pi­ra­tory sys­tem?

Wellness Update - - Get The Facts about Cystic Fibrosis -

The ba­sis for the prob­lem with CF lies in an ab­nor­mal gene. The re­sult of this gene de­fect is an atyp­i­cal elec­trolyte trans­port sys­tem within the cells of the body. The ab­nor­mal trans­port sys­tem causes the cells in the res­pi­ra­tory sys­tem, es­pe­cially the lungs, to ab­sorb too much sodium and wa­ter. This causes the nor­mal thin se­cre­tions in our lungs to be­come very thick and hard to re­move. Th­ese thick se­cre­tions put the child with CF at risk for con­stant in­fec­tion. The high risk of in­fec­tion in the res­pi­ra­tory sys­tem leads to dam­age in the lungs, lungs that do not work prop­erly, and even­tu­ally death of the cells in the lungs. The most com­mon causes for in­fec­tion in the lungs of the CF pa­tient are the fol­low­ing bac­te­ria: • Staphy­lo­coc­cus aureus • Haemophilus in­fluen­zae • Pseu­domonas aerug­i­nosa (PA) Over a pe­riod of time, PA be­comes the most com­mon bac­te­ria that causes in­fec­tion and be­comes dif­fi­cult to fight. A large per­cent­age of res­pi­ra­tory in­fec­tions in the CF pa­tient are due to PA.

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