Most people think of children when they hear cystic fibrosis. Thankfully with new treatments and new therapies people are living much longer.
This gentleman, named Gary Anderson, is a perfect example. He just celebrated his 70th birthday! And while he is 70 years young, many in the CF community would consider this a big feat.
Most people are diagnosed with CF at a very young age, but Gary only had very mild symptoms as a child. So, for many years, doctors weren’t concerned. He wasn’t diagnosed with cystic fibrosis (CF) until he was in his 30s! He shocked his doctors because he had already lived past the age that most people do with this disease when he was diagnosed.
Cystic fibrosis is a genetic disease that effects the lungs and the digestive system.
We all have mucous, but with CF there is a lot of it–and it is thick. The thick mucous is a breeding ground for bacteria.
Part of a person’s treatment includes inhalation drugs and also some kind of percussion to loosen the mucous. Research has found that treatments that including shaking the body help people with Cystic Fibrosis live longer lives.
Gary’s doctor thinks a big reason why Gary is doing so well is because of how diligent he’s been throughout his life. Gary is always at his appointments and cares for himself every day without fail. If he does become sick, he always calls his doctor so he can be treated properly.
He also has a great attitude! His doctor says that Gary has an upbeat attitude and is a very pleasant patient!
Researchers are working hard and hoping that cystic fibrosis becomes a geriatric disease. With research, new medications and new treatment techniques are promising.
Gary’s doctor said that he is his second patient to live to the age of 70. As research continues, I hope to see all CF patients make it to the golden years!