RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus)

Have you heard of RSV? It’s a nasty cold virus that is always out and about, but we’re seeing lots of it at the moment. RSV stands for Respiratory Syncytial Virus and commonly does the rounds through daycare centres and schools. It gives you a runny nose, cough/wheeze and often fevers, and it tends to be a bit worse and last for a bit longer than a “normal” cold. For most kids and adults it is just (really really) annoying, but not serious. However, in little kids under age 2, and particularly in babies, it can make them pretty sick and progress to a more serious chest infection called bronchiolitis, or pneumonia.

So how do you know if it’s getting bad? First of all – if in doubt, give us a call or go to ED and get checked. You will NEVER be wasting someone’s time doing this. Signs to watch for in particular though (especially in babies in toddlers) are persistent high fevers, reduced fluid intake, generally seeming flat and lethargic, or needing to use extra muscles and energy to breath (breathing more rapidly than normal, the base of the neck being sucked in and/or the skin in between the ribs being sucked in as they are breathing). Again, if your instinct is that something isn’t right or you are worried, just get it checked. Making an appointment usually fixes things anyway!

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