On the left: Chest x-ray from January 2013 On the right: Chest x-ray from January 2016
What's the first thing you notice? Be honest...
Fat! And that's a good thing for a CFer. Let me fill you in on the huge difference in these photos.
January 2013 - I was half way through my first year of teaching. I weighed 109lbs, although my lung function was 88% at the time, it wasn't consistently that high. I was showing signs of pre-diabetes, losing weight quickly and not compliant with my treatments. This x-ray is pretty good for a CF adult (24 then). Lungs are pretty clear with mild issues in the upper area of my right lower lobe.
January 2016 - I was into my fourth year of teaching, on Kalydeco for a little over two years, a mommy, 124lbs, and a steady lung function of 88%. I had a normal A1C (aka: no diabetes!) and had been compliant with my treatments for a couple years now. The lung damage was very similar, which is key. Typically, adults with CF slowly lose lung function over years, but that fact that my lung function is even better (now) is quite amazing.
There are two giant factors: Kalydeco and compliance.
When Tim and I got married and talked about starting a family, I became very serious about my health. I didn't want to sit back and let CF slowly destroy my body as it was. I finally took control and started being complaint with all of my medications and treatments. It was only fair for my husband, and then daughter. To this day, I remain complaint with my treatments because they're what keep me alive.
Looking back at blog posts from right before I began taking Kalydeco, I remember that I really didn't want to start it. I didn't want to rely on another drug to keep me healthy. But after realizing, 'what's another pill?!', I figured I'd give it a go. I started Kalydeco August 30, 2013. My lung function the month prior was 77% and I weighed 109lbs. Today, my lung function is 92% and my weight is typically between 124-127lbs. That means, since beginning Kalydeco 2 1/2 years ago my lung function has gone up about 15% and I've gained 15-20lbs! Now if that's not amazing, I don't know what is!! From two little blue pills twice a day!
I plan to continue taking those little blue pills and doing ALL of my treatments every single day...well, until there's a cure!