Work with Your CF Team 

Your doctor or members of your CF team are probably already screening NTM at your regular checkups. But if you are noticing symptoms or other changes in your body, you should feel comfortable bringing up the possibility of NTM with your CF team. The laboratory will not routinely check your sputum for NTM unless your doctor specifically orders the test.

If you are diagnosed with NTM lung disease, you will likely be asked to increase your visits to the clinic so that your response to treatment can be regularly checked. You will be closely watched for any side effects of the treatments. You may be asked to start treatment when in the hospital; some people are able to start treatment at home.

Since NTM disease mainly affects the lungs, it will be helpful to work with your respiratory therapist or physical therapist to make sure your airway clearance is as effective as possible. Also, they can help keep track of your lung function tests.

Your dietitian will be able to help you if your symptoms include weight loss or lack of appetite. Consider taking advantage of support from your social worker to help manage the costs of treatment and time away from work.

Updated 07/20/12