Cystic Fibrosis Facts – Effect on Digestion

Cystic fibrosis (


) is a very rare genetic disorder that affects only 1 out of 3200 children.

Cystic fibrosis facts

are necessary to understand because this genetic disease is known to affect the entire body and could be fatal. This disease is also progressive and is characterised by the formation of a cyst and scar tissue in the pancreas.

Cystic Fibrosis Facts:

Being aware of these facts is important because, there are a lot of misconceptions about this disease.

  • Fist thing is that this disorder is inherited and not spread. This condition mostly affects the secretory glands affecting the liver, pancreas and intestines along with the sweat glands and sinuses. But the brain, is not affected in any way.
  • The next is concerned with the gene

    CFTR (cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator)

    which is necessary for the regulation of digestive juices, sweat and mucous. The CFTR gene has two copies present in the body and one working copy prevents the onset of cystic fibrosis. If both the copies fail, the condition is sure to develop, ergo CF is called an autosomal recessive disease.

  • People suffering from CF develop thick mucous that not only blocks the lungs but also obstructs the pancreas causing it to secrete low enzymes that results in the malabsorption of food. Malabsorption would lead to a poor growth in children. This pancreatic problem due to CF also makes it difficult to absorb fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and K.
  • Other problems associated with CF are heartburn, constipation and intestinal blockage. In older people suffering from CF, intestinal blockage is caused by thickened stools.
  • Another complication associated with CF is idiopathic chronic pancreatitis that can lead to frequent abdominal pain and can be life threatening.
  • The thick mucous caused in CF patients would also cause problems with the liver functions causing the bile secreted by the liver to block the bile ducts. If the bile ducts are blocked, the liver would get damaged and scarred.

The above mentioned

cystic fibrosis facts

are only with regards to the digestive system and digestion. Other respiratory and sweat gland complications have not been discussed.

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