HSE Advising People To Be On The Lookout For RSV Symptoms

Cases are expected to increase between now and April.

The Health Service Executive in the midlands is asking people in the region to look out for RSV symptoms.

It's a highly contagious disease that is the main cause of bronchiolitis and pneumonia in very young children.

It also poses a risk to older adults who may have a compromised immune system.

Cases are expected to increase over the months of October through to April.

Paediatrician at Midlands Regional Hospital Portlaoise, Marie Rohan says parents should encourage their children to wash their hands on a regular basis:

Symptoms of RSV

Initial symptoms can include

•    runny nose

•    blocked nose

•    mild fever (temperature of 38 degrees Celsius)

•    slight cough.

Further symptoms usually develop over the next few days, including:

•    mild fever (temperature of 38 degrees Celsius)

•    a dry and persistent cough

•    rapid or noisy breathing (wheezing)

•    feeding less

•    fewer wet nappies

•    vomiting after feeding

•    being irritable

About RSV (Bronchiolitis)

RSV causes Bronchiolitis, which is a common chest infection in babies and young children. This virus spreads when someone coughs or sneezes and it mostly affects babies and young children under 2 years old, especially babies under 6 months old. Most cases are mild and clear up within 2 to 3 weeks without treatment. Antibiotics are not needed and will not help to treat it.

Main ways to assist babies with bronchiolitis:

•    keep breastfeeding if you are breastfeeding

•    don’t smoke around them

•    feed little and often as able

•    know signs and symptoms and when to go to your GP/ED.

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