Cystic Fibrosis, or CF, affects the lungs and the digestive system. CF is the most common, fatal, genetic disease affecting Canadian children and young adults. Forty years ago, most children with CF did not live long enough to attend kindergarten. Today, half of Canadians with CF are expected to live into their 40s and beyond.
While life span has improved for patients with CF, quality of life is still an issue. Daily treatments, medication, clinic visits and health challenges are always present.
For us, when Katie is healthy, we do two treatment sessions a day with her. When she is sick (cold, flu, etc.), we do three or four treatment sessions with her.
Here’s a brief list of Katie’s regular medicine intake and treatment regimen:
- approx 20 pills a day (enzymes – they help Katie digest food);
- vitamin supplements twice a day;
- 2 to 4 Pediasure nutrition supplement drinks each day;
- Nebulizer + medicine – basically, a mist mask that Katie wears twice a day for 15 minutes each time;
- Percussion treatment – 15 to 20 minutes of hitting her chest and back – twice a day;
Plus, the following “specialty items” when she is sick with a cold, flu or other sickness:
- Oral antibiotics;
- Additional medicine in her nebulizer from time to time as her health dictates;
- Additional nebulizer and percussion treatment – typically 3 or 4 treatment sessions a day when she’s sick;
You can find out more about CF at the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.