Health

Prognosis of RSV and Possible Complications

Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV ) is a very normal respiratory virus that causes common problems such as slight cold and breathing difficulties. Generally, people recover in a span of few weeks, but in some situations, it might turn harmful, especially for elderly adults and new-born babies/infants.

Two in three children will get affected by this virus during their initial months, leading to bronciolitis or pneumonia that block nostrils and nasal passage airways, causing running nose, congestion, cough, and fever which are curable. But at sometimes it might turn into a chronic disorder of major organs such as heart/lung/kidney because of the lowered functioning of the immune system. Children who are affected with bronchiolitis might be experiencing the symptoms of asthma during the later phases of their life. Pneumonia also occurs when this RSV enters the lungs, causing rapid breaths, chest pain, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea. The symptoms may slow down gradually or sometimes grow severe to cause chronic asthma or heart/lung diseases.

A Respiratory syncytial virus may show visual symptoms such as the retraction of the area between the ribs during inhalation. Poor appetite and feeling of fatigue can be observed, which may, in turn, lead to dehydration, causing cyanosis in new-born babies.

If the symptoms are at the initial stages, then they can be controlled by the following:

Look for the signs of dehydration and control it by replacing fluids lost through vomiting and diarrhoea, but if the situation worsens, ibuprofen can be administered initially for minimising the symptoms. Since it is a viral infection, antibiotics are not given, but if any symptoms occur in combination with bacteria, such as ear infections, then antibiotics will be administered, for which the entire prescription need to be followed without fail for appropriate results.

 

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But if its severity aggravates the symptoms, it is always better to consult a physician and opt for suitable medication. For situations where chronic symptoms develop, it is highly required to hospitalise the kids for supportive therapy by providing supplemental oxygen or mechanical ventilation and fluid replacement depending on the level of infection caused by the virus. Additionally, bronchodilators are also used to support the rapid breaths and provide quick relief from closed nasal passages.

Ribavirin is an antiviral agent administered to children affected with RSV in the dosage of 3g in 300ml of water via SPAG unit for at least 3-7 days depending on the clinical acknowledgement. For high-risk children, RSV immunoglobulin intravenous prepared from RSV antibodies of donors is used for infants to lower the symptoms of respiratory infections. Palivizumab is most efficient for prophylaxis of high-risk children. If premature infants show the symptoms of this infection, then any suggested medication need to be continued throughout the first year. Even for infants below six months, the chronological treatment started should be followed throughout the next six months.

Transmission of RSV virus generally occurs through contaminated secretions and infected respiratory droplet discharge with a minimum incubation period of 3-5 days. Nosocomial spread can be avoided by taking proper measures and maintaining hygiene near the patients. Vitamin-D supplementation during pregnancy may ameliorate the chances of viral infection through infant stages.

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