Is it true that people with cystic fibrosis don’t experience thirst as often as so-called “normal” people? If so, is there an explanation why the thirst message isn’t communicated as well or isn’t properly decoded by the brain? Could improper hydration have dramatic consequences on the body?
As far as we know, the thirst perception mechanism in people with cystic fibrosis is not affected. Actually, this perception centre is located in an area of the brain where the disease has no known effect. Nonetheless, it is important to drink lots of fluids on a regular basis. Among other things, proper hydration contributes to bowel function and probably increases the fluidity of respiratory secretions. You should pay close attention to fluid intake during the dog days of summer, after strenuous physical exertion and during episodes of respiratory infection, when salt must be added to liquids.