Treatments

Cystic Fibrosis Treatments

There is no cure for cystic fibrosis, but new treatments focus on helping patients live longer, fuller lives. Individualized treatment depends on the severity of the symptoms.

  • Pulmonary rehabilitation: This may include exercise, education, nutritional counseling and psychosocial counseling.
  • Chest physical therapy: Using your hands or a variety of devices, percussion (pounding) helps loosen mucus in the lungs.
  • Exercise: With precautions to avoid dehydration, exercise can help loosen mucus and make breathing easier.
  • Medications, including:
    • Antibiotics to fight infection
    • Anti-inflammatory drugs (inhaled or oral) to reduce airway swelling
    • Bronchodilators to relax the muscles surrounding the airways
    • Bone density drugs to build bone mass
  • Supplemental oxygen: This therapy may be necessary when blood oxygen levels are low because of mucus buildup.
  • Lung transplant: Some CF patients may qualify for a lung transplant.
  • Nutritional supplements: This is for patients who are not absorbing enough nutrition from their food.
  • High-calorie, high-salt diet: This diet helps combat weight loss and dehydration due to excessive sweating.
  • Feeding tube: A feeding tube helps some patients absorb more nutrients.

Treatments

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