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It made for powerful drama, but is it based in fact?Cystic fibrosis, or CF, is an inherited disease caused by a defective gene.It builds up in your lungs and blocks your airways.(Airways are tubes that carry air in and out of your lungs.) The buildup of mucus makes it easy for bacteria to grow. Over time, these infections can severely damage your lungs.Fifty years ago, CF patients wouldn't live past childhood, but now, with advances in treatments and medications, CF patients can live well into adulthood and even middle-age.
Secretory glands include glands that make mucus and sweat.The parents likely don't have the disease themselves.CF mainly affects the lungs, pancreas, liver, intestines, sinuses, and sex organs.As treatments for CF continue to improve, so does life expectancy for those who have the disease.
Today, some people who have CF are living into their forties or fifties, or longer.Over time, damage to the lungs can cause severe breathing problems.