Hello Family and Friends,
The Great Strides Walk for cystic fibrosis has been canceled this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. So in place of that, they have scheduled a Virtual Walk on June 5th, where Mike and I will walk in our neighborhood to raise money to find a cure for cystic fibrosis.
As most of you know, our two grandchildren, Jonah (7), and Ellery (4), both have cystic fibrosis, as well as their two cousins, Elliott (7) and Amelie (5). CF is a life-threatening disease that adversely affects the lungs, digestive system, reproductive system, and the liver.
Once a year we ask everyone we know to give our family their support by praying for those affected by this disease, walking with us, and/or making a donation to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation to help find a cure.
We call our team "The Four Leaf CLovers", as we feel very lucky to have these four children in our lives!
We appreciate any support you can give and THANK YOU in advance!
Below are some facts on CF for your information.
Mike & Becky Ratzlaff
Cystic Fibrosis (CF) Quick Facts
In the 1950s those with CF often didn't survive to get to elementary school. Current median predicted age of survival is late 30s - early 40s. Of course we need this to continue to increase and the research funded by the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation is making this a real possibility.
Cystic fibrosis is a disease that causes mucus to be very thick. This adversely affects many organ systems.
- Mucus can clog the lungs making it difficult to breathe. The thick mucus also traps bacteria in the airways, which often leads to severe lung damage. Respiratory problems are the most serious complication for people with CF.
- In the pancreas, the buildup of mucus prevents the release of digestive enzymes that help the body break down food and absorb important nutrients. People with CF often have malnutrition and poor growth. They often need to take enzymes and require twice as many calories. Scarring of the pancreas can also lead to diabetes.
- In the liver, thick mucus can obstruct bile ducts, which can lead to cirrhosis.
- Most males with CF cannot have children and for females reproduction is very difficult.
Both parents must be carriers of the CF gene to have a child with CF. When both parents are carriers, the chances are:
- 25% that the child will have CF
- 50% that the child will be a carrier and will not have CF
- 25% that the child will not inherit either CF gene.
Currently there is no cure for CF. There is a drug that was recently approved that targets the underlying cause of CF for a small number of people with a specific mutation of the CF gene. More treatments like this are currently being studied. All other CF therapies available today just treat the symptoms of CF.