Physical therapists at CHKD are an integral part of the Cystic Fibrosis team. While regular exercise is important for everyone, it is particularly important for our patients with CF. Our physical therapists work one-on-one with our patients with cystic fibrosis and other members of their care team to find ways to exercise safely, maintain good posture, optimize airway clearance and assist in preventing and addressing musculoskeletal pain secondary to CF.

Regular exercise and stretching is tough and we all find reasons to avoid it. Here are some powerful reasons for you to make a commitment to exercise:

  • Better overall health: Our bodies are made to be active. When we become inactive, we put ourselves at increased risk for heart and bone disease, diabetes, cancer, and pain.
  • More energy: When you improve your heart, lung, and muscle function, you have more energy for daily tasks, as well as daily CF treatments.
  • Better lung function: Regular exercise can improve your ability to get mucus out of your airways.
  • More time with others: Taking part in physical activities with other people is a good way to motivate yourself and a great way to develop and maintain social relationships.
  • Improved Posture: Chronic coughing and inactivity can lead to abnormal posture which  in turn can result in neck and back pain and make you a less efficient breather. Working with your PT on stretches and exercises can help you minimize pain and maintain good posture throughout life.

Even when you are in the hospital you should try to move about as much as possible. PT will work with you in the hospital to help you maintain your fitness level, work on airway clearance and work with you to develop a personalized exercise program that fits your lifestyle when you leave the hospital.

At CHKD, a PT is present at your CF clinic visits to screen your posture, joint range of motion, and endurance. A PT will assess pain and educate and assist you with implementing an individualized exercise program. Your PT and care team may recommend outpatient physical therapy to assist with any impairments detected on your PT clinic screen.

CHKD has multiple outpatient locations throughout the Hampton Roads area with specialty trained physical therapists to assist you in managing musculoskeletal conditions related to cystic fibrosis and in monitoring your exercise regimen. The bottom line is that cystic fibrosis can lead to inactivity if you let it. Being inactive can give rise to additional disease and disability issues, including pain. Let our PTs help you stay on the move.