Cold weather RSV in summer baffles doctors, worries parents

Health

KSL.com 08 July, 2021 - 10:31am 33 views

RSV, or respiratory syncytial virus, is a common cause of cold-like symptoms but can be serious for infants and the elderly. Cases dropped dramatically last year, with people staying home and social distancing, but began cropping up as pandemic restrictions eased.

"I've never seen anything like this before," Dr. Kate Dutkiewicz, medical director at Beacon Children's Hospital in South Bend, Indiana, said after treating two RSV-infected infants recently. Both needed oxygen treatment to help with breathing. "I've never seen cases in July, or close to July."

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a health advisory on June 10 about an increase in RSV cases across parts of the South. Cases have appeared in many other states, too.

LaRanda St. John grew worried when her 6-week-old son, Beau, developed a bad cough a few weeks ago. The Mattoon, Illinois, mom has a medical background and suspected RSV when she opened his sleeper and saw his chest heaving with labored breathing.

"The doctor's office couldn't get me in because they were flooded with people calling" about kids with similar symptoms, St. John said.

A positive test in the ER confirmed RSV. The infant developed a rapid heart rate and had to be hospitalized overnight. His 16-month-old sister, Lulabelle, also contracted the virus but was not as sick and didn't need hospitalization.

St. John said she wondered if it might be COVID-19 because it's the wrong season for RSV.

"I can't say I was relieved, because I know RSV is just as bad," she said.

Children infected with either virus usually develop only mild illness but for some, these infections can be serious.

Among adults aged 65 and up, RSV can lead to pneumonia and causes almost 180,000 hospitalizations and 14,000 deaths yearly. Cases in kids and adults usually occur in fall through early spring.

Off-season cases in Australia were a tip-off that the same might happen in the United States, said Dr. Larry Kociolek, an infectious disease specialist with Chicago's Lurie Children's Hospital.

Typically, infants are exposed to RSV during the first year of life, often when older siblings become infected in school and bring the virus home, Kociolek said. But, he added, "there were a lot of kids and babies who were not exposed to RSV in winter of 2020 and winter of 2021. That just leaves a much larger proportion of susceptible infants."

In infants, symptoms may include fussiness, poor feeding, fever and lethargy. Children may have runny noses, decreased appetite, coughs and wheezing.

But in very young infants and those born prematurely, the virus can cause small airways in the lungs to become swollen and filled with mucous. Babies who develop this condition, called bronchiolitis, may require hospitalization and oxygen or ventilator treatment.

There is no approved treatment for RSV, although a once-monthly injection of an antibody-based medicine is sometimes prescribed before and throughout RSV season to help prevent severe RSV lung problems in premature infants and other babies at risk for serious disease.

Reinfections are common but typically cause milder symptoms than the initial illness.

Kociolek said the recent unusual surge in cases could be partly due to more testing because of COVID-19 fears. In usual times, parents may dismiss RSV symptoms as nothing serious but now may fear they signal the pandemic virus.

RSV spreads through contact with airborne droplets from an infected person, but it's much more likely than COVID-19 to linger on skin and other surfaces including toys, which can also be a source of transmission.

RSV is among reasons why day care centers and preschools often have strict policies about keeping kids with coughs home from school.

"A lot of parents think, 'Oh well, it's just a cold, they're fine to go to school," said Diana Blackwell, director of children's programs at Auburn University-Harris Early Learning Center in Birmingham, Alabama.

Despite strict cleaning measures, several children at her center have become sick with RSV in recent weeks, including her own 4-month-old son. He had violent coughing spells and was prescribed medicine often used to treat breathing problems in asthma, but did not need to be hospitalized.

She called the summertime outbreak at her center "just weird."

"It didn't even cross my mind that it would end up being something like RSV," Blackwell said.

Dr. Mary Caserta, a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics' infectious diseases committee and a professor at the University of Rochester, said parents should be aware of the unusually timed virus activity and seek medical care if babies appear very ill or have trouble breathing.

RSV is one reason why pediatricians often caution parents of young babies to avoid crowds in winter cough and cold season.

"COVID has made people so hungry to be with other people that it would be hard now" to make the same recommendation, Caserta said.

Whether the unusual summertime virus activity foreshadows less-than-usual RSV this coming winter is uncertain, she said.

"I've given up in any way trying to forecast the future," Caserta said.

Read full article at KSL.com

Cold Weather Virus in Summer Baffles Docs, Worries Parents

Snopes.com 09 July, 2021 - 12:14am

LARANDA ST. JOHN VIA ASSOCIATED PRESS

LaRanda St. John with her children, Lulabelle and Beau, at their home in Mattoon, Ill., in June. Beau developed a bad cough after his dedication ceremony at church. St. John, who has a medical background, suspected respiratory syncytial virus when she opened his sleeper and saw his chest heaving with labored breathing. Lulabelle also contracted the virus but was not as sick and didn’t need hospitalization.

LARANDA ST. JOHN VIA ASSOCIATED PRESS

Laranda St. John’s 6-week-old son, Beau, lied in a hospital bed, in June, at the Sarah Bush Lincoln Health Center in Matoon, Ill. Beau developed a bad cough after his dedication ceremony at church. St. John, who has a medical background, suspected respiratory syncytial virus when she opened his sleeper and saw his chest heaving with labored breathing.

The recent emergence of a virus that typically sickens children in colder months has baffled U.S. pediatricians and put many infants in the hospital with troublesome coughs and breathing trouble.

RSV, or respiratory syncytial virus, is a common cause of cold-like symptoms but can be serious for infants and the elderly. Cases dropped dramatically last year, with people staying home and social distancing, but began cropping up as pandemic restrictions eased.

“I’ve never seen anything like this before,” Dr. Kate Dutkiewicz, medical director at Beacon Children’s Hospital in South Bend, Indiana, said after treating two RSV-infected infants recently. Both needed oxygen treatment to help with breathing. ”I’ve never seen cases in July, or close to July.”

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a health advisory on June 10 about an increase in RSV cases across parts of the South. Cases have appeared in many other states, too.

LaRanda St. John grew worried when her 6-week-old son, Beau, developed a bad cough a few weeks ago. The Mattoon, Illinois mom has a medical background and suspected RSV when she opened his sleeper and saw his chest heaving with labored breathing.

“The doctors office couldn’t get me in because they were flooded with people calling” about kids with similar symptoms, St. John said.

A positive test in the ER confirmed RSV. The infant developed a rapid heart rate and had to be hospitalized overnight. His 16-month-old sister, Lulabelle, also contracted the virus but was not as sick and didn’t need hospitalization.

St. John said she wondered if it might be COVID-19 because it’s the wrong season for RSV.

“I can’t say I was relieved, because I know RSV is just as bad,” she said.

Children infected with either virus usually develop only mild illness but for some, these infections can be serious.

Among U.S. kids under age 5, RSV typically leads to 2 million doctor-office visits each year, 58,000 hospitalizations and up to 500 deaths — higher than the estimated toll on kids from COVID-19.

Among adults aged 65 and up, RSV can lead to pneumonia and causes almost 180,000 hospitalizations and 14,000 deaths yearly. Cases in kids and adults usually occur in fall through early spring.

Off-season cases in Australia were a tip-off that the same might happen in the United States, said Dr. Larry Kociolek, an infectious disease specialist with Chicago’s Lurie Children’s Hospital.

Typically, infants are exposed to RSV during the first year of life, often when older siblings become infected in school and bring the virus home, Kociolek said. But, he added, ”there were a lot of kids and babies who were not exposed to RSV in winter of 2020 and winter of 2021. That just leaves a much larger proportion of susceptible infants.”

In infants, symptoms may include fussiness, poor feeding, fever and lethargy. Children may have runny noses, decreased appetite, coughs and wheezing.

But in very young infants and those born prematurely, the virus can cause small airways in the lungs to become swollen and filled with mucous. Babies who develop this condition, called bronchiolitis, may require hospitalization and oxygen or ventilator treatment.

There is no approved treatment for RSV, although a once-monthly injection of an antibody-based medicine is sometimes prescribed before and throughout RSV season to help prevent severe RSV lung problems in premature infants and other babies at risk for serious disease.

Reinfections are common but typically cause milder symptoms than the initial illness.

Kociolek said the recent unusual surge in cases could be partly due to more testing because of COVID-19 fears. In usual times, parents may dismiss RSV symptoms as nothing serious but now may fear they signal the pandemic virus.

RSV spreads through contact with airborne droplets from an infected person, but it’s much more likely than COVID-19 to linger on skin and other surfaces including toys, which can also be a source of transmission.

RSV is among reasons why daycare centers and preschools often have strict policies about keeping kids with coughs home from school.

“A lot of parents think, ‘Oh well, it’s just a cold, they’re fine to go to school,” said Diana Blackwell, director of children’s programs at Auburn University-Harris Early Learning Center in Birmingham, Alabama.

Despite strict cleaning measures, several children at her center have become sick with RSV in recent weeks, including her own 4-month-old son. He had violent coughing spells and was prescribed medicine often used to treat breathing problems in asthma, but did not need to be hospitalized.

She called the summertime outbreak at her center “just weird.”

“It didn’t even cross my mind that it would end up being something like RSV,” Blackwell said.

Dr. Mary Caserta, a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics’ infectious diseases committee and a professor at the University of Rochester, said parents should be aware of the unusually timed virus activity and seek medical care if babies appear very ill or have trouble breathing.

RSV is one reason why pediatricians often caution parents of young babies to avoid crowds in winter cough and cold season.

“COVID has made people so hungry to be with other people that it would be hard now” to make the same recommendation, Caserta said.

Whether the unusual summertime virus activity foreshadows less-than-usual RSV this coming winter is uncertain, she said.

“I’ve given up in any way trying to forecast the future,” Caserta said.

Click here to see our full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak. Submit your coronavirus news tip.

By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the Terms of Service. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. Report comments if you believe they do not follow our guidelines.

Having trouble with comments? Learn more here.

Increase in RSV cases baffles pediatricians as parts of U.S. reports unseasonably high spread of virus

KTLA 09 July, 2021 - 12:14am

In this June 2021 photo provided by LaRanda St. John, her 6-week-old son, Beau, lies in a hospital bed at the Sarah Bush Lincoln Health Center in Matoon, Ill. (LaRanda St. John via AP)

The recent emergence of a virus that typically sickens children in colder months has baffled U.S. pediatricians and put many infants in the hospital with troublesome coughs and breathing trouble.

RSV, or respiratory syncytial virus, is a common cause of cold-like symptoms but can be serious for infants and the elderly. Cases dropped dramatically last year, with people staying home and social distancing, but began cropping up as pandemic restrictions eased.

“I’ve never seen anything like this before,’’ Dr. Kate Dutkiewicz, medical director at Beacon Children’s Hospital in South Bend, Indiana, said after treating two RSV-infected infants recently. Both needed oxygen treatment to help with breathing. ‘’I’ve never seen cases in July, or close to July.’’

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a health advisory on June 10 about an increase in RSV cases across parts of the South. Cases have appeared in many other states, too.

LaRanda St. John grew worried when her 6-week-old son, Beau, developed a bad cough a few weeks ago. The Mattoon, Illinois mom has a medical background and suspected RSV when she opened his sleeper and saw his chest heaving with labored breathing.

“The doctors office couldn’t get me in because they were flooded with people calling’’ about kids with similar symptoms, St. John said.

A positive test in the ER confirmed RSV. The infant developed a rapid heart rate and had to be hospitalized overnight. His 16-month-old sister, Lulabelle, also contracted the virus but was not as sick and didn’t need hospitalization.

St. John said she wondered if it might be COVID-19 because it’s the wrong season for RSV.

“I can’t say I was relieved, because I know RSV is just as bad,’’ she said.

Children infected with either virus usually develop only mild illness but for some, these infections can be serious.

Among U.S. kids under age 5, RSV typically leads to 2 million doctor-office visits each year, 58,000 hospitalizations and up to 500 deaths — higher than the estimated toll on kids from COVID-19.

Among adults aged 65 and up, RSV can lead to pneumonia and causes almost 180,000 hospitalizations and 14,000 deaths yearly. Cases in kids and adults usually occur in fall through early spring.

Off-season cases in Australia were a tip-off that the same might happen in the United States, said Dr. Larry Kociolek, an infectious disease specialist with Chicago’s Lurie Children’s Hospital.

Typically, infants are exposed to RSV during the first year of life, often when older siblings become infected in school and bring the virus home, Kociolek said. But, he added, ‘’there were a lot of kids and babies who were not exposed to RSV in winter of 2020 and winter of 2021. That just leaves a much larger proportion of susceptible infants.’’

In infants, symptoms may include fussiness, poor feeding, fever and lethargy. Children may have runny noses, decreased appetite, coughs and wheezing.

But in very young infants and those born prematurely, the virus can cause small airways in the lungs to become swollen and filled with mucous. Babies who develop this condition, called bronchiolitis, may require hospitalization and oxygen or ventilator treatment.

There is no approved treatment for RSV, although a once-monthly injection of an antibody-based medicine is sometimes prescribed before and throughout RSV season to help prevent severe RSV lung problems in premature infants and other babies at risk for serious disease.

Reinfections are common but typically cause milder symptoms than the initial illness.

Kociolek said the recent unusual surge in cases could be partly due to more testing because of COVID-19 fears. In usual times, parents may dismiss RSV symptoms as nothing serious but now may fear they signal the pandemic virus.

RSV spreads through contact with airborne droplets from an infected person, but it’s much more likely than COVID-19 to linger on skin and other surfaces including toys, which can also be a source of transmission.

RSV is among reasons why daycare centers and preschools often have strict policies about keeping kids with coughs home from school.

“A lot of parents think, ‘Oh well, it’s just a cold, they’re fine to go to school,’’ said Diana Blackwell, director of children’s programs at Auburn University-Harris Early Learning Center in Birmingham, Alabama.

Despite strict cleaning measures, several children at her center have become sick with RSV in recent weeks, including her own 4-month-old son. He had violent coughing spells and was prescribed medicine often used to treat breathing problems in asthma, but did not need to be hospitalized.

She called the summertime outbreak at her center “just weird.’’

“It didn’t even cross my mind that it would end up being something like RSV,’’ Blackwell said.

Dr. Mary Caserta, a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics’ infectious diseases committee and a professor at the University of Rochester, said parents should be aware of the unusually timed virus activity and seek medical care if babies appear very ill or have trouble breathing.

RSV is one reason why pediatricians often caution parents of young babies to avoid crowds in winter cough and cold season.

“COVID has made people so hungry to be with other people that it would be hard now’’ to make the same recommendation, Caserta said.

Whether the unusual summertime virus activity foreshadows less-than-usual RSV this coming winter is uncertain, she said.

“I’ve given up in any way trying to forecast the future,’’ Caserta said.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trademark and Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

The groundbreaking KTLA Morning News is celebrating its 30th anniversary Thursday, and in honor of this special occasion, the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce presented the station with an Award of Excellence.

“From everyone at the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, congratulations,” Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Rana Ghadban said.

The delta variant is surging through populations with low vaccination rates. On Thursday, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said that’s leading to “two truths” — highly immunized swaths of America are getting back to normal while hospitalizations are rising in other places.

The South Central Neighborhood Council unanimously passed a resolution calling for the city to pay financial compensation to those affected by the explosion and provide them with mental health services. It also demanded that those responsible for the decision to detonate the explosives be fired.

The RSV virus outbreak | nzherald.co.nz

nzherald.co.nz 09 July, 2021 - 12:14am

Winter respiratory virus on the rise in East Tennessee during summer months

WATE 6 On Your Side 08 July, 2021 - 02:46pm

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A respiratory virus normally circulating during the winter months is on the rise this summer. RSV is a common childhood illness and according to East Tennessee Children’s Hospital, it is circulating in the community right now.

Children’s Hospital reported seeing very few patients with the illness during normal cold and flu season, but since the beginning of June, nearly 200 children have been hospitalized for RSV. The virus is especially dangerous for newborns. According to Dr. Ryan Redman, Children’s Hospital ER Director, they currently are nearly a dozen children hospitalized with RSV.

He says the virus normally peak’s right after the Winter holidays and usually wraps up around Spring. He says that this year they have had their highest numbers, so far, in June and it is not showing signs of dipping yet.

Redman believes that the uptick in cases is due to people beginning to gather again. The decline in RSV seen during the winter months was due to the pandemic and people changing their habits with mask-wearing, social distancing and washing hands more often. All of those measures can cut down on the spread of viruses like RSV according to Redman.

RSV is a contagious infection of the lungs and breathing passages. It is spread through droplets containing the virus when someone coughs or sneezes. For most adults, it’s just a mild cold, but for children under the age of five, it is especially dangerous because their airways are so tiny. RSV can cause other respiratory illnesses such as bronchiolitis or pneumonia, It can also cause rapid dehydration if a child is refusing to eat and drink.

Redman says that prevention is key. “It is very important to remind people to NOT kiss babies. Remember to wash hands regularly and clean surfaces with disinfectant, keep older children with a cold away from babies until symptoms have passed.”

Children’s Hospital has seen a total of 357 positive RSV cases since November. Children’s Hospital RSV stats for 2020-2021 (as of July 7, 2021):

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

MADISONVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — On Thursday, President Joe Biden announced he is pulling the remaining U.S. troops from Afghanistan by Aug. 31. The date is a couple of weeks earlier than the original Sept. 11 deadline.

U.S. Army veteran Michael Trost, who was there, reflects on the 20-year war, saying this is a time in history we all should learn from.

He fears what happened in Nashville in 2020, when property owners were faced with a 34% increase in property taxes, could happen here.

From family members to investigators, here’s a look at some of the people in Summer’s story so far in the search for the five-year-old Rogersville girl as the investigation into her disappearance continues.

Cold That Usually Surfaces in Winter is Surging This Summer, Baffling Docs and Worrying Parents

NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth 08 July, 2021 - 10:57am

The recent emergence of a virus that typically sickens children in colder months has baffled U.S. pediatricians and put many infants in the hospital with troublesome coughs and breathing trouble.

RSV, or respiratory syncytial virus, is a common cause of cold-like symptoms but can be serious for infants and the elderly. Cases dropped dramatically last year, with people staying home and social distancing, but began cropping up as pandemic restrictions eased.

"I’ve never seen anything like this before,’’ Dr. Kate Dutkiewicz, medical director at Beacon Children’s Hospital in South Bend, Indiana, said after treating two RSV-infected infants recently. Both needed oxygen treatment to help with breathing. ‘’I’ve never seen cases in July, or close to July.’’

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a health advisory on June 10 about an increase in RSV cases across parts of the South. Cases have appeared in many other states, too.

LaRanda St. John grew worried when her 6-week-old son, Beau, developed a bad cough a few weeks ago. The Mattoon, Illinois mom has a medical background and suspected RSV when she opened his sleeper and saw his chest heaving with labored breathing.

“The doctors office couldn’t get me in because they were flooded with people calling’’ about kids with similar symptoms, St. John said.

A positive test in the ER confirmed RSV. The infant developed a rapid heart rate and had to be hospitalized overnight. His 16-month-old sister, Lulabelle, also contracted the virus but was not as sick and didn’t need hospitalization.

St. John said she wondered if it might be COVID-19 because it's the wrong season for RSV.

"I can’t say I was relieved, because I know RSV is just as bad,’’ she said.

Children infected with either virus usually develop only mild illness but for some, these infections can be serious.

Among U.S. kids under age 5, RSV typically leads to 2 million doctor-office visits each year, 58,000 hospitalizations and up to 500 deaths — higher than the estimated toll on kids from COVID-19.

Among adults aged 65 and up, RSV can lead to pneumonia and causes almost 180,000 hospitalizations and 14,000 deaths yearly. Cases in kids and adults usually occur in fall through early spring.

Off-season cases in Australia were a tip-off that the same might happen in the United States, said Dr. Larry Kociolek, an infectious disease specialist with Chicago’s Lurie Children’s Hospital.

Typically, infants are exposed to RSV during the first year of life, often when older siblings become infected in school and bring the virus home, Kociolek said. But, he added, ‘’there were a lot of kids and babies who were not exposed to RSV in winter of 2020 and winter of 2021. That just leaves a much larger proportion of susceptible infants.’’

In infants, symptoms may include fussiness, poor feeding, fever and lethargy. Children may have runny noses, decreased appetite, coughs and wheezing.

But in very young infants and those born prematurely, the virus can cause small airways in the lungs to become swollen and filled with mucous. Babies who develop this condition, called bronchiolitis, may require hospitalization and oxygen or ventilator treatment.

There is no approved treatment for RSV, although a once-monthly injection of an antibody-based medicine is sometimes prescribed before and throughout RSV season to help prevent severe RSV lung problems in premature infants and other babies at risk for serious disease.

Reinfections are common but typically cause milder symptoms than the initial illness.

Kociolek said the recent unusual surge in cases could be partly due to more testing because of COVID-19 fears. In usual times, parents may dismiss RSV symptoms as nothing serious but now may fear they signal the pandemic virus.

RSV spreads through contact with airborne droplets from an infected person, but it’s much more likely than COVID-19 to linger on skin and other surfaces including toys, which can also be a source of transmission.

RSV is among reasons why daycare centers and preschools often have strict policies about keeping kids with coughs home from school.

"A lot of parents think, ‘Oh well, it’s just a cold, they’re fine to go to school,’’ said Diana Blackwell, director of children’s programs at Auburn University-Harris Early Learning Center in Birmingham, Alabama.

Despite strict cleaning measures, several children at her center have become sick with RSV in recent weeks, including her own 4-month-old son. He had violent coughing spells and was prescribed medicine often used to treat breathing problems in asthma, but did not need to be hospitalized.

She called the summertime outbreak at her center "just weird.’’

"It didn’t even cross my mind that it would end up being something like RSV,’’ Blackwell said.

Dr. Mary Caserta, a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics’ infectious diseases committee and a professor at the University of Rochester, said parents should be aware of the unusually timed virus activity and seek medical care if babies appear very ill or have trouble breathing.

RSV is one reason why pediatricians often caution parents of young babies to avoid crowds in winter cough and cold season.

"COVID has made people so hungry to be with other people that it would be hard now’’ to make the same recommendation, Caserta said.

Whether the unusual summertime virus activity foreshadows less-than-usual RSV this coming winter is uncertain, she said.

"I’ve given up in any way trying to forecast the future,’’ Caserta said.

Health Stories