The 3 symptoms that mean your baby could have a life-threatening case of common virus

CASES of a nasty child virus have increased sharply in recent months, as current figures show.

Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a wintertime virus that can feel like a common cold in adults, but can be life-threatening for some young children.

RSV is the leading cause of death in children under the age of five worldwide

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RSV is the leading cause of death in children under the age of five worldwidePhoto credit: Getty

RSV cases are higher than usual for this time of year, as are cases of other bugs, including the flu.

Data suggests cases among under-five year olds fell by nine percent in the week ended December 8 compared to the previous week.

However, experts assume that it will rise again in the colder months.

Most dangerous to babies, the bug is the leading killer of thousands of children under the age of five around the world.

However, young children who cannot tell adults that they feel sick may not initially show typical cold-like symptoms.

According to the US Centers for Disease Control, these are the only three signs a baby with RSV may show:

  1. irritability
  2. Decreased activity
  3. difficulty breathing

Other symptoms that appear in children of all ages include:

  • Runny nose
  • decrease in appetite
  • Cough
  • Sneeze
  • Fever
  • gasping

The guidance states that symptoms are usually worst between the third and fifth day of the bug, with the cough getting better within three weeks.

If you are concerned about any of your child’s symptoms, you should contact your GP.

In emergencies, you should always call 999.

RSV cases are higher than normal for this time of year, as are cases of other bugs, including the flu.

That’s because RSV has been prevented from circulating as usual during the Covid lockdown, which has seen children stay at home.

In a report from the Academy of Medical Sciences, virus experts said Britain was heading for a “deadly triple mix of Covid-19, influenza and the respiratory virus RSV”. [this winter].

“This could push an already depleted NHS to breaking point this winter if we don’t act now,” it added.

dr Conall Watson, consultant epidemiologist at the UKHSA, said RSV cases are continuing, which is typical of this time of year, particularly in young children.

“For children under the age of two, RSV can be serious — especially for babies and premature babies. Use a tissue to catch coughs and sneezes, then wash your hands to reduce spread to those most at risk.

“Never smoke around a baby and avoid visiting babies when they are sick. If you are concerned your child is experiencing cold symptoms with unusual breathing or difficulty feeding, please contact your GP or NHS 111.

“If your child seems seriously ill, trust your judgment and seek emergency care,” added Dr. Watson added.

There are currently no available treatments or cures for RSV.

But after decades of stalemate, pharmaceutical giant Pfizer announced last week that its new RSV vaccine is 82 percent effective at preventing infants from needing hospitalization, giving hope to parents around the world.

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dr Chrissie Jones, an expert in pediatric infectious diseases at the University of Southampton, says vaccination is “an absolute game changer”.

She says, “If this vaccine were approved by regulators, it would have a significant impact on hospitalizations for RSV disease.”

https://www.the-sun.com/health/6912587/rsv-baby-symptoms/ The 3 symptoms that mean your baby could have a life-threatening case of common virus

Emma James

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