Cystic fibrosis-related diabetes (CFRD) is a type of diabetes that occurs in people who have cystic fibrosis. Cystic fibrosis is a disease that causes thick, sticky mucus to build up in the lungs, digestive tract and other areas of the body.
Cystic fibrosis causes damage to the pancreas, which contains beta cells that make insulin. Insulin is a hormone that helps sugar to enter the cells in the body and give your child energy to think, play and work. Without insulin your child’s body cannot use sugar for energy. If enough pancreatic beta cells are damaged, the body can no longer make sufficient amounts of insulin to keep the blood sugar normal.
In children with cystic fibrosis, insulin is important for maintaining weight and may be important in pulmonary function. Children 8 years or older, adolescents and adults with CF should be screened every year for cystic fibrosis-related diabetes.
The Cystic Fibrosis-Related Diabetes Program provides care to patients and families with CFRD in the inpatient and outpatient settings. We work with the pulmonary team in the Cystic Fibrosis Center to provide the best care for you and your child. Our multidisciplinary team of specialists, including endocrinologist, nurse practitioners, diabetes educator and nutritionist, provides you with the information and skills you need to care for your child at home.
The CFRD Program is conducting a research study related to the screening of children with CFRD.
An additional study is designed to improve our understanding of how and why diabetes develops in children with cystic fibrosis.
We are also studying how high blood sugars and insulin deficiency may affect pulmonary (lung) function, nutritional status and muscle mass and strength in children with cystic fibrosis.