Respiratory infection targets infants, babies.
Many working parents are forced to put their children in daycare, a move that often exposes infants to the flu, chickenpox and other illness.
Dr. Paul Checcia from Texas Children's Hospital warns parents of a little known respiratory virus called RSV which can lead to pneumonia or bronchitis. It especially poses a danger for at-risk kids with pre-existing conditions.
“We're talking about difficulty breathing, not taking a bottle, and then progressing to really needing a ventilator in an ICU setting,” says Checcia.
RSV also can linger long after you think its safe to take your child back to daycare.
“Definitely if they're still febrile its not a good time to send them,” he says. “Knowing what virus a child has is important, for example RSV will shed out of the nasal secretions 4-5 days after the fever has broken.”
Parent Heidi Staats learned about RSV the hard way.
“Quickly within 12 hours it went to a very serious situation which resulted in my son turning gray and being rushed to Children's Hospital where he spent six days on a ventilator,” says Staats.
Staats her son was fortunate to recover. She now dedicates her time to warning other parents about the dangers of RSV.
As with any virus, good hand washing is the best preventative. Baby wipes, hand sanitizers and other products also help.