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What is Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV)

  "The vast majority of kids who get RSV seem to have nothing worse than a simple cold and never have to be hospitalized with RSV," explains Magna Dias, MD, a pediatric resident (a hospital-only doctor) at Yale University School of Medicine Say. ). "Some children may develop ear infections or fevers, so it's important to have your child evaluated by a pediatrician if you have any concerns. Good hand washing or using hand sanitizer will stop it from spreading."



  What are the symptoms of RSV?

  In mild cases of RSV, inflammation is limited to the upper airways (nose and throat), most notably causing a runny and stuffy nose. "The hallmark of RSV is that it produces a lot of mucus, causing you to blow your nose more often," and if you have any of these symptoms, try the Easysweet Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) Rapid Test.

  Other symptoms may include a mild cough, decreased appetite, and low-grade fever. More serious RSV infections eventually enter the lower respiratory tract (bronchi and lungs). A sign of a worsening infection is symptoms that get worse (for example, a cough that turns into wheezing).

  Runny nose and fever usually start three to five days after the infection starts (then gets worse and peaks). For some people, these may be the only symptoms. But about half of children with first-time infection develop later (more intense) coughing and wheezing. Easysweet Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) Rapid Test can help you quickly diagnose whether you have the disease.

  This can be serious for babies younger than 6 months. "For young babies infected with RSV, the excess mucus can block their tiny nasal passages and airways. This can cause them to have trouble breathing, and sometimes their noses are so congested that they can't breathe through them. Of course, they will Choosing to breathe [through the mouth] instead of eating can lead to dehydration (loss of body fluids) and the need for IV fluids," Dr Dias said.

  How is RSV spread?

  RSV is highly contagious. It spreads through droplets released into the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes, or if you touch a contaminated surface such as a counter or doorknob (it can live for hours). It can also spread through direct contact (for example, kissing the face of a child with RSV).

  People infected with RSV are contagious for three to eight days after exposure to the virus. But because their immune systems aren't as good at eliminating the virus, some babies and others with weakened immune systems are contagious for up to 4 weeks even after they no longer have symptoms.

  In the United States, RSV infections are most common in the fall, winter, and spring.

  What are the risk factors for RSV?

  People of any age can get RSV, but previous exposure tends to reduce the severity of symptoms.

  Typically, RSV is diagnosed by a healthcare professional based on symptoms and a physical examination.

  Your doctor will listen to your child's lungs with a stethoscope to check for signs of pneumonia or bronchiolitis. RSV can be confirmed by laboratory testing using a nasal mucus swab, but testing is done only if it affects treatment plans.

  "Most of the time, like a cold, knowing it's RSV doesn't impact our care because the only real treatment is supportive care," she said.

  How is RSV treated?

  There is no specific treatment for RSV infection. In most cases, RSV infection -- especially in healthy children and adults -- clears up within a week or two. Malaise and fever can be treated with over-the-counter medicines such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. It is also important to drink plenty of water to prevent dehydration.

  People with RSV infection (especially infants younger than 6 months or older adults) may require hospitalization if they experience dehydration, ear pain, or difficulty breathing, which could be signs of a secondary infection, such as an ear infection or pneumonia. Signs of dehydration in babies and toddlers include dry mouth, crying without tears, lethargy and dry diapers for 8 hours or more. Your child's doctor will evaluate your child and recommend hospitalization if necessary.

  In a hospital, treatment may include IV fluids, or in severe cases, oxygen therapy or mechanical ventilation (a breathing tube inserted through the mouth and airway).

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