Rebecca and Jamie Nye weren’t quite sure how to react when their son, Mack, was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis at just five weeks old.
With no family history of the disease, Rebecca and her husband had little idea about cystic fibrosis or what it would mean for their son.
Cystic fibrosis primarily affects the lungs and digestive system because of a malfunction in the exocrine system, responsible for producing saliva, sweat, tears and mucus.
There is currently no cure.
People with the disease develop an abnormal amount of excessively thick and sticky mucus in the lungs, airways and the digestive system.
The mucus causes impairment of the digestive functions of the pancreas and traps bacteria in the lungs resulting in recurrent infections which lead to irreversible damage.
Lung failure is the major cause of death for someone with cystic fibrosis.
At 19 weeks old, Mack has had no major problems arise from his condition, but his parents are realistic about the road ahead.
‘‘At this early stage, he is symptomless and although we are hopeful he will maintain his good health, we know there will be some challenges along the way,’’ Rebecca said.
‘‘We take each day as it comes and will continue keeping Mack as healthy as possible for as long as possible.’’
In a quest to raise funds and awareness for cystic fibrosis research, Rebecca and Jamie have teamed up with 11 other people for Great Strides Bendigo.
Great Strides is a fun run and walk which raises awareness and funds for cystic fibrosis organisations around Australia.
‘‘Cystic Fibrosis Community Care has been very helpful for us, as we have a lot of travel to Melbourne for Mack,’’ Rebecca said.
‘‘We want to give back to an organisation that helps a lot of people like us and we hope there will be a cure in Mack’s lifetime.
‘‘In the meantime, we will continue our support to keep kids like Mack as healthy as possible for as long as possible.’’
●To support the fundraising effort, head to: https://gs2017bendigo.everydayhero.com/au/moving-for-mack