Respiratory Syncytial Virus

Friday, April 07, 2017

Respiratory syncytial virus is a common, and very contagious, virus that infects the respiratory tract of most children before their second birthday. Dr. Edward Hill discusses RSV in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV, causes fever, stuffy or runny nose, sore throat, and cough. Your child is more likely to get RSV between November and April.

Most children have had at least one RSV infection by two years of age. Most of these infections are mild. Younger children are more likely to get a lung infection and have breathing problems and wheezing.

Babies who are younger than three months, who were born early, or who have certain medical problems are more likely to have problems from RSV.

Treatment is mainly aimed at helping symptoms. RSV is caused by a virus, so antibiotics dont help. Steroids and cool mist arent helpful either.

RSV can be spread by contact with body fluids like saliva and mucus from a sick childs nose or mouth, or by objects that the child has touched. Having your child wash his or her hands or using alcohol-based hand sanitizers may lower the risk of spreading the infection.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.