Psycho-social Aspects in Children with Cystic Fibrosis
Cystic fibrosis is a multiple-system chronic disease of genetic origin usually manifested in infancy or early childhood resulting in an abbreviated life span of its victims. Effective management on a daily basis consists of complex regimens which impose a heavy burden on parents. Failure to adhere to them can result in episodes of recurrent lung infection which can further shorten the life span of the patient. The present rate of family breakdown in the United States is a factor that needs to be recognized in the home management of the "CF" patient. This study of 37 families explores the impact of parental relationships on the home care of CF children. Its findings confirm that children living at home with two natural parents received more optimal care and were in better physical condition than those with only one natural parent. This paper suggests guidelines for social work intervention to promote more effective home management of the child with this disease and to counteract when indicated the effect of the loss of traditional parental relationships.