Originally developed to treat problems such as ear infections or UTIs, clinical trials in 1986 found that Ciprofloxacin could also help manage some cystic fibrosis symptoms, in particular, pseudomonas and staphylococcal infections. When used in conjunction with Colomycin, it was 80 percent effective in delaying or reducing pseudomonas infection.
Airway Clearance Techniques
In the 1950s, doctors advised postural drainage to help CF patients clear excess mucus from their lungs. This was quickly followed by the “percussion technique” which is still in use today. However, newer devices such as pep masks, flutter, and acapella overtook the need for postural drainage which researchers discovered caused more problems than it solved, with many patients experiencing gastrointestinal reflux. Today, people living with CF can use portable vests which do their airway clearance while they get on with other things.
Kalydeco is the only treatment available that works on the cause of the disease rather than managing the symptoms. It works by gating some of the gene mutations that occur in around 5 percent of CF patients.
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