Marten DeVlieger, 37 with cystic fibrosis from Taber, Canada, joins Tiffany and Gunnar on the podcast this week to talk about his life with CF and what led to him inventing the basis for the Hill-Rom Monarch Airway Clearance System. Marten begins the interview by talking about his very active lifestyle, from backpacking through Europe, to being involved in a number of action sports and working as a commercial helicopter pilot, and as he says “living out of a hockey bag” while on the job. He is also a father, and discusses how he and his wife chose to use a sperm donor to help start his family. The idea for the Monarch Vest came from his desire to be on the move and Canada’s failure to fund Vest therapy for cystic fibrosis patients. Marten wanted to come up with a device that would suit his needs as well as benefit the patient community at large. Marten and Gunnar (who also has a Monarch) discuss some of the benefits to being able to use Vest therapy on the go and how it’s changed they way they travel. It’s always important to discuss potential cystic fibrosis therapies and medications with a doctor before changing your treatment!
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