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Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) Infection

Alia A. Hussain, MD, BSc (Hons) and Sahil Mullick, MD Reviewed 06/2019
 


BASICS

Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a medium-sized, membrane-bound RNA virus that causes acute respiratory tract illness in patients of all ages. The most clinically significant disease occurs...

DIAGNOSIS

ALERT

In most cases, the diagnosis is clinical. Laboratory and radiologic studies are not routinely necessary (2)[B].

 

HISTORY

  • Rhinorrhea and upper respiratory congestion

  • Difficulty feeding in i...

TREATMENT

GENERAL MEASURES

  • Assess hydration status and ability to take fluids orally. Treat dehydration (oral or IV/NG)—particularly in infants.

  • Supplemental oxygen, often high flow nasal cannula, if pu...

ONGOING CARE

FOLLOW-UP RECOMMENDATIONS

Primary care follow-up to ensure resolution 

PATIENT EDUCATION

REFERENCES

1
Byington CL, Wilkes J, Korgenski K, et al. Respiratory syncytial virus–associated mortality in hospitalized infants and young children. Pediatrics.  2015;135(1):e24–e31. [View Abstrac...

ADDITIONAL READING

  • American Academy of Pediatrics. Respiratory syncytial virus. In: Pickering LK, Baker CJ, Kimberlin DW, et al, eds. Red Book: 2012 Report of the Committee on Infectious Diseases. 29t...

CODES

ICD10

  • B97.4 Respiratory syncytial virus causing diseases classd elswhr

  • J06.9 Acute upper respiratory infection, unspecified

  • J21.0 Acute bronchiolitis due to respiratory syncytial virus

  • J12.1 Respira...

CLINICAL PEARLS

  • RSV causes 50–90% of pediatric bronchiolitis.

  • Hand sanitation (alcohol-based rubs are preferred) is the key to RSV prevention.

  • The diagnosis of RSV is typically clinical. Routine laborat...

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