Cystic fibrosis affects over 30,000 children and adults in the United States. Many people are carriers and may not know it. So it is no surprise that there are some celebrities and famous people with cystic fibrosis.
Sadly, many, people with CF don’t survive long enough to make it to stardom, so we may never know all the talent and intelligence that could have been. Here are some who did make it.
Lisa Bentley, Canadian Ironman triathlete, who has a mild case of CF, has won eleven Ironman competitions.
Fraser Brown (2006-) Son of the UK Chancellor Gordon Brown.
Christopher Davies (1978-) Former Southern Redbacks cricketer
Alexandra Deford (1971-1980) Daughter of sports writer Frank Deford, subject of Deford’s book Alex: Life Of A Child.
Celine Dion’s niece Karine– passed away from CF in 1993 at the age of 16
Gunnar Esiason Son of former football player Boomer Esiason.
Bob Flanagan (19521996) American writer, poet, performance artist, and comic.
Gregory Lemarchal (1983-) French singer and winner of the show Star Academy, Season 4.
Alice Martineau (1972-2003) British singer-songwriter and model.
Laura Rothenberg (19812003) Brown University student, and author of Breathing for a Living: A Memoir, and My So Called Lungs a radio documentary, which aired on NPR August 5, 2002.
Andrew Simmons (1984-) British professional wrestler.
Gegory Lemarchal- French pop singer, died April 30, 2007
Fredric Chopin, composer- There has been some speculation Chopin had CF
The disease affects the mucus producing glands of the body. Cystic fibrosis also affects the respiratory, digestive, and reproductive organs as well as the sweat glands in the body. The normal, thin, liquid lining the passageways to the digestive and respiratory areas of the body becomes blocked when that normal lining turns thick and begins to block the passageways to these parts of the body.
Cystic fibrosis is the most common hereditary disease in Caucasians in the United States. Nearly ten million Caucasians in America are carriers of the mutant gene that causes the disease and are unaware of that fact.
Caucasians have a higher risk of getting cystic fibrosis although the disease has been detected in all ethnic groups. Breaking the statistics down so we can understand them is this; one in 31 Americans are carriers of the disease and have no symptoms to identify them as carrying the defective gene.
It is devastating to a parent when their child is diagnosed with cystic fibrosis. They may feel guilt because this disease is an inherited medical condition. A parent may not know they are a CF gene carrier.
If both parents are carriers there is a 25 percent chance one of their children will be born with cystic fibrosis. There is a 50 percent chance one or more of their children will be carriers, and a 25 percent chance the child will not be diagnosed with cystic fibrosis.
Image courtesy Boston Public Library, Creative Commons License.