Cystic Fibrosis Podcast 219: Pulmonary Exacerbations and the Impact of Inflammation

In the latest Jerry Cahill CF Podcast, Dr. Patrick Flume – Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics and Director of the Adult CF Center at the Medical University of South Carolina – sits down to explain pulmonary exacerbations and the impact of inflammation in cystic fibrosis patients.

What is pulmonary exacerbation?

While there is no specific definition or criteria, Dr. Flume’s general description is a “clinical worsening of a patient’s underlying lung disease.” In simpler terms – a patient’s daily symptoms worsen, whether that is a cough, increased sputum, fatigue, or loss of appetite.

Why are these exacerbations so harmful?

Exacerbation leads to inflammation, which in a patient with CF, is excessive, persistent, and ongoing. The inflammation causes injury to a patient’s airways, which furthers damage and leads to loss of lung function that can often not be recovered.

How are these issues treated?

While there are therapies in place, they only address the downstream consequences of the underlying condition – they are in place to help the patient feel better and treat the symptoms.

Tune in to learn more about exacerbations and inflammation and why Dr. Flume thinks working with patients and seeing things from their viewpoints is so important to the treatment and healthcare process.

This video podcast was made possible through an unrestricted educational grant from Corbus Pharmaceuticals to the Boomer Esiason Foundation.