2 months and four days until race day!
February 28, 2018
BENEFITING: Cystic Fibrosis Foundation
ORGANIZER: Cystic Fibrosis
EVENT: 2018 Pittsburgh Marathon
EVENT DATE: May 06, 2018
This year, I am running 13.1 miles for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. As some of you may know, I am a dieitian at Children's Hospital in Pittsburgh. Before I accepted my job in the Pulmonology department, the only thing I knew about Cystic Fibrosis was that it was a disease of the lungs. On a very surface level it is a chronic lung disease, but behind the disease are individuals fighting a battle everyday that you couldn't even imagine.
Individuals with CF have a defect in the CFTR protein, which causes a thick, sticky buildup of mucus in the lungs, pancreas and other digestive organs. In the lungs, bacteria becomes stuck in the mucus leading to chronic infections, lung damage, and eventually respiratory failure. In the pancreas, the mucus prevents the release of digestive enzymes that allow the body to break down food and absorb vital nutrients. Every day, my patients have to wear a chest vest up to three times a day, which is designed to vibrate the airways and break up the mucus in their lungs. They take their CF meds, their CF vitamins, some of them have feeding tubes that they run overnight, and everytime before they eat they take multiple capsules of pancreatic enzymes. Before EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. THEY. EAT.
And you want to know something incredible? Not one patient or family member that I've ever met has complained about having Cystic Fibrosis. These patients and their families/friends are the strongest individuals that I have ever met in my entire life. Calling them rockstars is putting it lightly. I am so humbled to know each and every one of them.
Currently, there are new medications on the market that are designed to correct the defect that causes Cystic Fibrosis, but they have not yet been approved for everyone with CF. With your help, we can continue to work towards finding a cure for CF, for everyone.
Any amount you are able to donate is giving these patients a promise of a better, longer life. Together, we are adding tomorrows.
Thank you so much.
Learn more about Cystic Fibrosis and our chapter here in Pittsburgh at: www.cff.org/WesternPA