Cystic Fibrosis

Contact Us:

2G Clinic, McMaster Children's Hospital

Phone: 905-521-2100, ext. 78515. 
Fax: 905-521-5056

Conditions We Treat:

Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is one of the most commonly inherited disorders in childhood, affecting approximately 1 in every 3,200 children born in Canada.  CF occurs in all racial groups with the highest incidence in Caucasians.  CF is a multi-organ disease affecting mainly the lungs and digestive system.

Patients with CF are born with a genetic defect that causes a malfunction of the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator protein (CFTR), a chloride channel in the cell membrane that plays an important role in maintaining water and salt balance across many body tissues like sweat glands, lungs, liver, pancreas and reproductive organs.  Due to this malfunction, there is a build-up of thick mucous which makes it difficult to clear bacteria and leads to cycles of infection and inflammation which over time, damages the lungs.  As a result, people with cystic fibrosis must follow a daily routine of physiotherapy to keep their lungs clear of mucous and infection.  In the digestive tract, CF makes it difficult to digest and absorb adequate nutrients from food eaten.  Most people with CF must swallow digestive enzymes (on average 20 pills a day) with every meal and snack to maximize absorption of their food and to gain weight.

Genetics

CF is inherited in an Autosomal Recessive pattern, meaning in order to be affected with CF, an individual must have 2 copies of a CFTR mutation (one from each parent).  Approximately 1 in 25 Canadians carries a defective version of the gene responsible for CF.  Carriers do not have and can never get CF.  However, when two carriers have a child, there is a

Facts

What Services Do We Provide?

Currently visits are scheduled every 3 months with an increased frequency of appointments for infants and toddlers.  The earlier 1300h appointment times are booked for infants and small toddlers.  For all families, extra appointments are added when there are health issues or concerns. 

The McMaster CF clinic  works in conjunction with the RSV clinic to offer all patients less than 2 years of age RSV immunization.  This government funded immunization program entails monthly visits from November to April.

Our routine clinic practice has most patients that are over 6 years of age undergoing spirometry (breathing test) prior to each clinic visit.  The pulmonary function laboratory for breathing testing is on the third floor of the hospital--3U.  Sputum or throat cultures are done at clinic visits and these are specially processed by our lab.  Patients are also scheduled for yearly chest x-rays and blood-work. 

Patients aged 10 years and older also do yearly oral glucose tolerance testing (OGTT) blood-work.  The clinic’s Child Life Specialist can assist children and adolescents coping with blood tests as needed.

The Children’s Exercise and Nutrition Centre (CENC) provides exercise testing on a regular basis.  Clinic appointments for exercise are coordinated with CF clinic appointments. 

Appointments with other services and clinics are coordinated when possible.  It is often dependent on which days these clinics operate.  This may include appointments with Diabetes, ENT, G.I. and Adolescent Medicine.

Newborn Screening Centre:

McMaster Children’s hospital is one of 5 referral centers in the province for newborn screening.  CF newborn screen positive results are followed up in the CF NBS clinic on Thursdays.

Clinic Location:

The hospital is located at 1200 Main St. W., Hamilton, ON, L8N 3Z5.

2G Clinic, McMaster Children's Hospital

2nd Floor, Red Section

Hospital Map

What Happens When We Arrive?

When you arrive to the clinic please check in with the Business clerk at the reception desk. The business clerk will let the team know that you have arrived.

Staff will do their best to make sure you are seen at your appointment time.  If you feel you have been waiting a long time please speak with a business clerk at the reception desk.

Referral Process:

Any referrals can be faxed directly to the clinic as noted on the referral form.

Urgent Referrals:

The clinics are not for emergencies. If your child needs to be seen on an urgent basis, please contact your family doctor or go to your local emergency department. 

Clinic Hours:

(closed on holidays)

Monday 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Tuesday 9:00 a.m. -12:00 p.m.

Thursday 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. (Newborn Screening Only with sweat testing)

Changing Your Appointment:

Please contact the 2G clinic #78515 if you need to change or cancel your child's appointment.

Important:

If the patient is ill with any antibiotic resistant organism, MRSA, a communicable disease (such as Chicken Pox), or a respiratory infection, please notify reception staff prior to your scheduled appointment.

What Should You Bring to the Clinic?

Pharmacy Orders:

Interdisciplinary Team:

Physician:

A specialist trained to provide care for patients with Cystic Fibrosis.

Nurse:

A nurse that specializes in CF care.

Physiotherapist:

 Dietitian:

 Child Life Specialist:

Social Worker:

Our Philosophy:

Our philosophy is family- centered care. We strive to provide the best care possible

Resources:

Information and Support:

Cystic Fibrosis Canada

Kids Health Website

Ontario Disability Support Program

Disability Tax Credit Forms

Introduction for Parents

Taking Charge of Your Health