This information is provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD).
Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a genetic disorder that causes mucus to build up and damage organs in the body, particularly the lungs and pancreas. Signs and symptoms may include salty-tasting skin; persistent coughing; frequent lung infections; wheezing or shortness of breath; poor growth; weight loss; greasy, bulky stools; difficulty with bowel movements; and in males, infertility. Over time, mucus buildup and infections can lead to permanent lung damage, including the formation of scar tissue (fibrosis) and cysts in the lungs. CF is caused by mutations in the CFTR gene and inheritance is autosomal recessive. Treatment aims to relieve symptoms and usually includes respiratory therapies, inhaled medicines, pancreatic enzyme supplement, and nutritional supplements. Newer medications such as CFTR modulators have been approved for use in the United States. Ongoing research is focused on finding a cure for the disease.
For more information, visit GARD.