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Playlist: Cystic Fibrosis Awareness

Compiled By: PRX Editors

 Credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/50972268@N00/479164155/">Jason Wesley Upton</a>
Image by: Jason Wesley Upton 
Curated Playlist

May is Cystic Fibrosis Awareness Month. CF is a chronic disease that afflicts thousands of people worldwide. Show your support with these editors picks.

Below are picks chosen by PRX editorial staff. You can find other options for CF Awareness Month by using our search.

Four Failing Lungs

From Catie Talarski | 50:29

While many people hit their stride in their late 20s, Beth and Brian are medicating, massaging and coaxing their lungs into lasting as long as possible. Producer Catie Talarski documented them for a year to understand what it’s like to live with CF.

Brian_1_prx_small

In 2010, there were 1,770 lung transplants performed in the United States -- the most ever in a single year.

For a person with Cystic Fibrosis, the transplant may extend life by years – or it could lead to continued suffering and rejection of the new organ.

While most of us are just hitting our stride in our late 20s, Beth and Brian are medicating, massaging and coaxing their lungs into lasting as long as possible.  Both have end-stage Cystic Fibrosis, and are struggling with a decision about transplant.

Producer Catie Talarski documented Beth and Brian for a year to understand what its like to live with this chronic disease. 

Brian’s blog: Don’t Hold Your Breath 
Beth's blog: 
Cystic Gal

Surrogacy Among Friends

From Karen Brown | 06:58

A woman carries a baby to term for her best friend, whose CF would make pregnancy hazardous. The women talk about their complex emotional, ethical, and legal arrangement.

Diane_and_meghan_small Meghan and Diane have been best friends since childhood. Meghan was born with Cystic Fibrosis and -- because of her health -- thought she'd never have children. But after Meghan got married, Diane made a very generous offer -- she would carry Meghan's baby to term. With considerable trepidation, Meghan accepted.

Now, with Diane well into the third trimester of the pregnancy, the two women talk about their complex emotional, ethical, and legal arrangement -- one that psychologists and surrogacy experts say has the potential to be much more complicated than a traditional "stranger" surrogacy.

Lucy and the Bike Girl

From Hillary Frank | 10:27

Lucy and the Bike Girl, who both have CF, meet in a chat room and bond over their efforts to become pregnant against advice of their doctors. They quickly become friends but can never meet in person. The interview tape is real; the narration is semi-fictional.

Bike_bell_small_small Lucy, a 28-year-old with cystic fibrosis, meets the "Bike Girl," who has the same disease, in an Internet chat room. They are both, against the advice of friends and doctors, trying to get pregnant. They quickly become friends but can never meet in person, because the Bike Girl carries a bacteria in her lungs that is toxic to anyone with cystic fibrosis. This piece is an experiment in combining fact and fiction. The interview tape is all from a real interview; the narration is semi-fictional.

StoryCorps: Howell Graham and Nan Graham

From StoryCorps | Part of the StoryCorps series | 01:51

As a child, Howell Graham was diagnosed with CF. In 1990, he had a double-lung transplant and is one of the longest-surviving recipients of that surgery. Howell and his mom remember the days after his surgery for StoryCorps

Graham_small As a child, Howell Graham was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis, a genetic disease that often affects the lungs.

In 1990, he had a double-lung transplant — a risky, experimental operation at the time. Today, Howell is one of the longest-surviving recipients of that surgery.

Here, Howell and his mom, Nan, remember the days after his surgery.