Use of nonmedical treatment by cystic fibrosis patients

J Adolesc Health. 1992 Nov;13(7):612-5. doi: 10.1016/1054-139x(92)90376-m.


To determine frequency, perceived effectiveness, and cost of religious, physical, and other nonmedical practices, we interviewed all (n = 402; 100% participation) of our cystic fibrosis patients/families [age, 0-45 (median, 18) years]. At least one type of nonmedical therapy was used by/on 264 (66%), two-thirds of which was religious. Most respondents perceived benefit (e.g., group prayer, 95%; religious articles, 81%; chiropractic, 69%). Only 17 (4.2%) invested over $200 lifetime (minimal compared with medical costs). These treatments, apparently used by most patients/families, rarely interfered with medical care. Physician openness and empathy toward patients' beliefs might enhance rapport and facilitate discussion of possible helpful or adverse effects of nonmedical treatment.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Complementary Therapies*
  • Cystic Fibrosis / therapy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Religion and Medicine