Girl, 7, who had life-changing cystic fibrosis drug on the NHS reveals she felt better in just THREE HOURS and can finally breathe without coughing
- Kate Farrer, seven, is one of the first children in England to be given the drug
- The youngster called the drug ‘life-changing’ and said she felt better in hours
- The drug, Kaftrio, was only made available after an NHS deal in the pandemic
- Kate said it was ‘really exciting’ that she can finally breathe without coughing
A child who received a ‘life-changing’ cystic fibrosis drug has told how she felt better in just three hours and can finally breathe without coughing.
Kate Farrer, seven, is one of the first children in England to be given the ‘transformational’ drug Kaftrio on the NHS.
Previously the drug was only available to patients over the age of 12.
However, it has now been extended to the younger age group thanks to a landmark deal completed by the NHS in during the pandemic.
Kate Farrer, seven, is one of the first children in England to be given the ‘transformational’ cystic fibrosis drug Kaftrio on the NHS
Kate (right) said she felt better within just three hours and hailed the drug as ‘life-changing’ (Pictured with her sister Orla)
The ‘modulator’ drug helps patients’ lungs function, allowing patients to breathe easily and have a better quality of life.
Kate started taking the drug on Sunday, and began to feel an improvement just three hours later, her family said.
She is one of about 1,300 children aged six to 11 who will now be able to access the drug thanks to the deal the NHS did in June 2020.
As well as helping Kate, the drug is set to benefit thousands more patients in England.
The cystic fibrosis treatment is a ‘triple combination therapy’ containing three drugs – ivacaftor, tezacaftor and elexacaftor.
It has revolutionized treatment for those with cystic fibrosis, which disrupts the body’s ability to regulate salt and water transport in the body, causing damage to the lungs, digestive system and other organs.
Doctors believe the drug will help around 60 per cent of the 10,000 people in England who suffer from cystic fibrosis, which mostly affects the lungs.
Kate said she was ‘really happy’ with the new drug.
‘I am really happy because it is a life-changing drug and it is going to help me a lot when I am older.’
She said: ‘I am really happy because it is a life-changing drug and it is going to help me a lot when I am older’
She added: ‘It is really exciting that I got it, because now life will hopefully be a bit fair with me, because sometimes it is not as fair because of all of my treatment and medications’
She added that she was feeling ‘a lot better’ and can exhale without coughing.
‘Now with this new medication – I have only been on it a few days but I am feeling a lot better now.
‘It is really exciting that I got it, because now life will hopefully be a bit fair with me, because sometimes it is not as fair because of all of my treatment and medications.
‘I am actually quite happy as I can now exhale all the way and not cough at all, not one bit.’
WHAT IS CYSTIC FIBROSIS?
Cystic fibrosis is caused by a faulty gene that a child inherits from both carrier parents.
The gene, known as the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR), is responsible for controlling the movement of water in and out of cells.
The fault leads to the mucus produced throughout the body becoming thick and building up in the lungs and digestive system.
Classic complications of the condition, which tend to present in infancy, include chronic infections, breathlessness, digestive problems and even infertility.
There are approximately 30,000 cases of CF in the US and nearly 11,000 people in the UK are known to suffer.
No cure currently exists and figures suggest half of patients will die before they’re 31.
Source: The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation