RSV causing uptick in hospital patients nationwide
Hospitals across the United States are seeing a rise in patients due to a rise in RSV cases.
The virus is a common cold-like sickness that is usually harmless in adults but can be serious for babies.
Doctors in New York City have been noticing a rise in cases since September, and they say they are also seeing more serious cases in patients under 6 months old and older children as well.
Dr. Melanie Cheng, pediatric hospitalist at NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County says that there are some telltale signs of RSV in your kids, such as flaring of the nostrils and if the muscles between the ribs are visibly contracting when breathing.
Cheng says that those symptoms are your cue to visit a doctor, and that the virus starts with a runny nose, cough and fever.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the virus sends about 58,000 kids under the age of 5 to the hospital each year.
Cheng says the recent uptick could be linked to the rise in other respiratory illnesses, combined with the relaxing of COVID-19 protocols that helped to keep kids safe.
“It scares me. We stay home most of the time,” said one concerned Bronx mother. “Just try to keep them safe… but we can't really keep them safe because it's everywhere.”
Cheng recommends continuing good hygiene practices and social distancing when possible.