Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Children's Health

Font Size

Cystic Fibrosis - Medications

Medicines for cystic fibrosis help keep the lungs as healthy as possible, reduce and control mucus in the lungs, and replace digestive enzymes.

Medication choices

Medicines to treat infections

Medicines to open airways in the lungs or keep them open

Medicines to control the amount and thickness of mucus

  • DNase (such as Pulmozyme). It is used to thin mucus in the lungs.
  • Mucolytics (such as acetylcysteine), to thin mucus in the lungs and the intestines. These aren't used very much, though, because they can irritate the lungs.
  • Saltwater solution (hypertonic saline). This is sometimes used to help clear mucus from the lungs. It is low-cost, and it may help reduce inflammation in the airways.1, 2

Medicines to reduce inflammation

Medicines to replace the effect of digestive enzymes

A small number of people with cystic fibrosis have a certain changed (mutated) gene called the G551D mutation. If you have this changed gene, the medicine ivacaftor (Kalydeco) can target the genetic cause of your lung problems and may help improve lung function. Talk to your doctor if you want more information about it.

What to think about

Some medicines work better for some people than for others. A medicine that works well for one person may not work for someone else. It can take time to find the medicines that work best for you or your child.

1

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: February 08, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
Next Article:

Today on WebMD

child with red rash on cheeks
What’s that rash?
plate of fruit and veggies
How healthy is your child’s diet?
 
smiling baby
Treating diarrhea, fever and more.
Middle school band practice
Understanding your child’s changing body.
 

worried kid
fitArticle
boy on father's shoulder
Article
 
Child with red rash on cheeks
Slideshow
girl thinking
Article
 

babyapp
New
Child with adhd
Slideshow
 
rl with friends
fitSlideshow
Syringes and graph illustration
Tool