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ER doctor concerned by rise in dangerous respiratory virus in N.S. children

ER doctor concerned by rise in dangerous respiratory virus in N.S. children

Our Halifax Children’s emergency department and wards are very busy with infants with RSV and other viral chest infections. Long wait times in the ED and close to full capacity on our wards. Keep your babies away from cousins & friends with colds.

RSV is a highly contagious respiratory virus that is particularly dangerous to babies. It’s most common in the winter months and can lead to bronchiolitis, a potentially serious lung infection.

RSV symptoms may include runny nose, decreased appetite, coughing, sneezing, fever and wheezing, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. In very young infants the only symptoms may be irritability, decreased activity and breathing difficulties. 

“So we all know now in a COVID world the term ‘long haulers.’ And that would apply to some RSV kids,” she said.

The same precautions for preventing COVID-19 are effective at preventing RSV: washing hands, using sanitizer and masks, and staying home if you’re sick.

“Right now — even even with COVID, even without COVID — people shouldn’t be kissing babies…. RSV is a serious illness. It kills. It kills babies. They can’t do anything to protect themselves,” said Thompson.


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