Cystic Fibrosis Lungs
Thick mucus production results in frequent lung infections. Diminished secretion of pancreatic enzymes is the main cause of poor growth, greasy stools, and deficiency in fat-soluble vitamins. Males can be infertile due to the condition congenital bilateral absence of the vas deferens. Often, symptoms of CF appear in infancy and childhood. Meconium ileus is a typical finding in newborn babies with CF.Individuals with cystic fibrosis can be diagnosed prior to birth by prenatal genetic testing. Newborn screening tests are increasingly common and effective (although false positives may occur, and children need to be brought in for a sweat test to distinguish disease vs carrier status). The diagnosis of CF may be confirmed if high levels of salt are found during a sweat test, although some false positives may occur.There is no cure for CF, and most individuals with cystic fibrosis die young: many in their 20s and 30s from lung failure. However, with the continuous introduction of many new treatments, the life expectancy of a person with CF is increasing to ages as high as 40 or 50. Lung transplantation is often necessary as CF worsens.