All posts tagged: lung function

The Cystic Fibrosis Breakthrough That Changed Everything

The Cystic Fibrosis Breakthrough That Changed Everything

They call it the Purge. You have experienced, in a modest way, something like it in the waning days of a bad cold, when your lungs finally expel their accumulated gunk. The rattle in your chest quiets. Your sinuses clear. You smell again: the animal sweetness of your children’s hair, the metallic breeze stirring a late-summer night. Your body, which oozed and groaned under the yoke of illness, is now a perfectly humming machine. Living is easy—everything is easy. How wonderful it is to breathe, simply breathe. Explore the April 2024 Issue Check out more from this issue and find your next story to read. View More Imagine, though, that you had never been able to simply breathe. Imagine that mucus—thick, copious, dark—had been accumulating since the moment you were born, thwarting air and trapping microbes to fester inside your lungs. That you spent an hour each day physically pounding the mucus out of your airways, but even then, your lung function would spiral only downward, in what amounted to a long, slow asphyxiation. This …