CF Awareness Month: Signs & symptoms of CF

Here is a list of common signs and symptoms of CF:
  • Very salty-tasting skin (my mom used to kiss my forehead and lick her lips to see if I needed to eat a salty snack to replenish salt)
  • Persistent coughing (coughing is what we do and we do it well)
  • Coughing that produces thick sticky mucus (oh the things that come out of our lungs)
  • Frequent lung infections (frequently diagnosed as pneumonia or bronchitis before CF diagnosis and classified as CF Exacerbation and/or pneumonia after diagnosis)
  • Wheezing or shortness of breath (a lot of people with CF also have asthma like I do…double whammy)
  • Poor growth and slow weight gain, in spite of a good appetite, failure to thrive (what lead to my diagnosis)
  • Frequent greasy, bulky stools or difficulty in bowel movements (oh boy, you don’t even want to know)
  • Small, fleshy growths in the nose, called nasal polyps (there have been people that have been diagnosed because their polyps led to questioning CF because they are so prominent in CF patients) (I have had multiple sinus surgeries which I will talk about on another day)
  • Liver issues, enlarged or scaring or narrowing of the ducts

CF affects multiple parts of the body but is mostly known as a lung disease and/or problems with pancreatic/stomach.

Here is a look at what CF looks like on the inside and what it can affect. It is not the same in everyone that has CF.  Some only have a few of these issues and some have all.  I just thought this chart was interesting and educational for those who wonder what goes on inside a CF body.
all things cf (click image to enlarge)

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