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What should I know about Kalydeco before my child takes it?

Before your child takes Kalydeco (ivacaftor), a prescription drug to treat cystic fibrosis (CF), you should know why it is being prescribed, what kind of results to expect, how to take it, what side effects to expect and when to call the doctor. Kalydeco is not for very young children; it is approved for children who are 6 years old or older. Kalydeco treats only one fairly rare form of CF, in which there is a G551D mutation, which occurs in about 4% of people with the disease.

Some children under 12 years of age have developed cataracts while taking Kalydeco. Children should have eye examinations before starting Kalydeco, and then repeat exams regularly during treatment. 

You'll give Kalydeco to your child as a pill twice a day, about 12 hours apart and at about the same times each day. Your child should eat a high-fat snack -- such as nuts or cheese -- before taking Kalydeco because it helps the body absorb the drug better. Make sure you understand enough about Kalydeco so that you can answer any questions your child may have about this new cystic fibrosis treatment.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.