CNEWS Convergence News Network reporter Chen Junkai/Reporting from Taipei
Parents should be careful if children have excessive phlegm, cough, wheezing, and fever! There is a one-and-a-half-year-old girl in the outpatient clinic who was recently sent to a child care center. Unexpectedly, just over a week later, she started to have a high fever, accompanied by severe nasal congestion, and often even coughed until she vomited. The vomit also contained mucus that looked like phlegm. Even after seeking medical treatment and taking medication, the fever subsided. After four days of continuous fever, he was sent to the hospital and was confirmed to be infected by the recently popular “Respiratory Syndrome Virus (RSV)”.
Yan Peiru, an attending pediatrician at the Yangming Campus of Taipei City United Hospital, said that when the girl sought medical treatment, auscultation revealed phlegm sounds and whizzing sounds in both lungs. The chest X-ray also showed inflammation in both lower lungs, and the blood test reported the inflammation index. and white blood cell count increased, and the RSV antigen rapid screening was confirmed to be positive. He was diagnosed as “respiratory fusion virus infection combined with secondary bacterial pneumonia.” He was admitted to the hospital, slept in an oxygen tent, and was treated with antibiotics. After a few days of treatment, he finally had a fever. Exit the hospital.
Observation from the pediatric clinic shows that due to the lifting of the epidemic and the resumption of school, many schoolchildren have fallen ill repeatedly. Parents often complain that they need to see a doctor almost every one or two weeks. Since September, the isolation positivity rate for respiratory fusion viruses has dropped. It has risen sharply and is now second only to the influenza virus.
Yan Peiru said that infants and young children under 5 years old are a high-risk group for infection with respiratory tract virus, which can cause bronchiolitis, croup and pneumonia. Because respiratory fusion virus infection will destroy the epithelial cells of the small bronchial tubes and produce a large amount of necrotic cells and secretions, it is often observed clinically that sick children have a lot of sputum. When the sputum blocks the small trachea of young children, it will cause severe symptoms in the sick children. Coughing, coughing until vomiting, or even shortness of breath, you will also hear a whistling sound in the trachea during auscultation.
What’s also tricky is that Yan Peiru said that the course of respiratory fusion virus is often longer than that of a common cold. Fever usually lasts for 3 to 5 days, and it takes an average of nearly 2 weeks for overall respiratory symptoms to significantly improve. In addition, children with asthmatic constitutions are also prone to acute asthma attacks after infection.
Yan Peiru said that the current treatment method for respiratory fusion virus is mainly symptom treatment, which requires more fluids. Drugs can only help relieve symptoms. For infants and young children who lack the ability to cough up phlegm, parents can pat the phlegm before feeding or use a home sprayer to reduce phlegm. Nasal aspirators can also assist in suctioning nasal mucus and help children improve their discomfort. However, it should be noted that if a sick child is found to have reduced activity, loss of appetite, shortness of breath, or obvious wheezing, he must seek medical attention for evaluation. If a high fever persists, or if the fever recurs after a few days, be careful to see if it is complicated by otitis media, sinusitis or bacterial pneumonia, which may require antibiotic treatment.
Yan Peiru reminded that after being infected with respiratory tract fusion virus, the body cannot produce effective lifelong immunity, so it can be re-infected. Even adults can be infected with respiratory tract fusion virus. Although most of them are mild, older people and Patients with weakened immune systems may still develop severe pneumonia and complications. Therefore, RSV is not a disease exclusive to young children. It is recommended to wash hands frequently, wear a mask, avoid crowded places during the epidemic period, and change clothes before coming into contact with young children and the elderly after returning home.
Photo source: schematic photo/reproduced from Pexels
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