Simple Nose Swab Test Might Gauge Severity of Child’s RSV

By Cara Muriz

Health Day Reporter

FRIDAY, Nov. 4, 2022 (HealthDay News) — While it’s not possible for parents to predict how long their child will need to stay in intensive care with a severe case of RSV, new research has discovered clues that may help. Which can make it easier. To predict which children will need a longer stay.

To study this issue, researchers at Ann & Robert H. Lowry Children’s Hospital in Chicago used nasal swabs from children with RSV in the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) within days of hospitalization.

The team examined which genes are turned on in response to RSV, also known as respiratory syncytial virus.

Despite the same dose of RSV and the same clinical presentation, some children showed signs of more damage to the cells inside the nostrils. This, the researchers found, was associated with longer PICU stays.

“We were excited to find that different sets of genes related to a child’s disease severity changed their body’s response to RSV,” said study senior author Dr. Brea Coates, a principal physician at Lowry Children’s. . “The ability to identify which infants with RSV in intensive care will recover quickly and which patients require a longer stay will provide parents and medical providers with invaluable information.”

Although interesting, these findings will need to be confirmed in a larger group of children before they can be used clinically, Coates noted.

“At this point, we found that more damage to the nasal mucosa of children with RSV may be a sign of a dysregulated response to the virus and may predict more prolonged illness,” Coates said in a hospital news release. I said. “These are promising findings that may ultimately provide better answers to parents and the care team.”

The findings were recently published in the journal Frontiers in Immunology.

More information

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more on RSV.

Source: Ann & Robert H. Lowry Children’s Hospital Chicago, news release, November 2, 2022

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