Disponible en / Available in: Español
Irene Nevado is an example of resilience in Cystic Fibrosis. At 41 years old, she has overcome two lung transplants, thanks to a spirit of self-improvement that should serve as an example for many people. In this new informative capsule, Irene tells us about her experience.
Immunosuppressants and rejection
Cystic Fibrosis is a disease that mainly affects the respiratory system. As it is degenerative, lung function decreases from adolescence onwards, and in certain more severe cases it may lead to lung transplantation.
Once the person is transplanted, taking immunosuppressant drugs is a constant to prevent the new lungs from being rejected.
Irene tells us that she did well for 8 years after the first transplant in 2008, but after that period, a chronic rejection in 2016 put her back on the waiting list for another transplant.
Resilience in Cystic Fibrosis
Two and a half years of fighting against the clock passed. Giving up and doing nothing was not in Irene’s plans, so she worked physically and psychologically to face an operation that was even more complicated than the first one.
With only 13% lung capacity, Irene trained every day to better prepare her body for the demands of the transplant. Swimming, her favorite sport, was the exercise of choice to improve her physical condition, within her limitations.
Wearing oxygen 24 hours a day, he had to find a way to carry the machine by his side during his training. A 15-meter tube, a Decathlon swim mask and a child’s float allowed for a continuous supply of oxygen during physical exercise.
Reward for effort
After two and a half years of waiting, Irene was rewarded for her efforts by receiving her new lungs. She tells us that there are more cases, although not many, of people transplanted twice or even three times and that most of them end up with renal affectation that can lead to a kidney transplant due to the large amount of medication they take.
Irene surprises the world
In February 2019 she left the Hospital, as she says, after her third birth. In June of that same year she left everyone open-mouthed when she participated in the XX Swimming Tour around Formentera against Cystic Fibrosis organized by the Respiralia Foundation. That experience made him reflect on how he could help other people in the same situation. His case inspired many people, as can be seen in this video.
His vocation: helping others
As a nurse by vocation and profession, she has been involved with people who are waiting for a transplant. Her experience can be very important for those people who are afraid to face this type of situation for which no one is prepared.
Being positive should be the line to follow for people with Cystic Fibrosis.
What is Cystic Fibrosis?
Cystic Fibrosis is a genetic, serious and degenerative disease that to date has no cure.
It mainly affects the respiratory, digestive, reproductive and sweat glands.
Currently, more than 2,000 mutations are known to cause the disease.
Statistics show that 1 in 5,000 people in Spain has Cystic Fibrosis (1 in 6,400 in the Balearic Islands) and 1 in 35 people is a carrier of a gene that causes the disease.
In the Balearic Islands there are 73 known diagnosed cases, but statistics speak of between 85 and 90 possible cases.
The awareness project of the Respiralia Foundation aims to raise awareness of this disease in order to discover those cases of people who have Cystic Fibrosis but have not yet been diagnosed.