Risks of Smoking for People With CF

The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation would like to emphasize the dangers of smoking and the effects it can have on the lungs of people with CF.

First, a person with CF cannot safely smoke. Even people with mild CF lung disease have compromised lung function; smoking is extremely detrimental and further lessens lung capacity. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Surgeon General’s office have published many reports on the dangers of smoking. Here are some key facts from those publications:

  • Smoking among youth can hamper the rate of lung growth and the level of maximum lung function. (CDC, Preventing Tobacco Use Among Young People )

  • Smokers as a group have a more rapid decline in Forced Expiratory Volume in one second (FEV1) with age than observed in non-smokers. (Surgeon General’s Report on the Health Consequences of Smoking

  • Among young people, regular smoking is responsible for cough and increased frequency and severity of respiratory illnesses. (CDC, Preventing Tobacco Use Among Young People )

These facts were published for people without a chronic lung disease in mind; the impact of smoking for people with CF is even more severe. In addition, smoking may disqualify someone for a lung transplant. There also is evidence that prolonged second-hand smoke exposure for children and adults with CF is harmful to their lungs and their nutrition

For more information regarding smoking and its dangers, please visit the CDC’s Web site or contact your local CF Foundation-accredited care center.