Scientists Warn: Anticipate a Resurgence of Respiratory Viruses in Young Children

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Canada ought to anticipate a resurgence of a childhood respiratory virus as COVID-19 bodily distancing measures are relaxed, authors warn in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Affiliation Journal).

Circumstances of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) have risen sharply in Australia and, extra lately, america as COVID-19 case counts have waned and pandemic public well being measures have been relaxed. Respiratory syncytial virus impacts the decrease respiratory tract and might trigger severe sickness and dying. Earlier than the COVID-19 pandemic, about 2.7 million youngsters worldwide have been contaminated with RSV annually, and it was the fourth commonest trigger of dying in younger youngsters.

“The low season resurgence in seasonal respiratory viruses now probably poses a menace to weak infants,” writes Dr. Pascal Lavoie, BC Children’s Hospital Analysis Institute and the College of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, with coauthors.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Canada, like different international locations, has seen only a few instances of RSV, with solely 239 constructive instances between August 29, 2020, and Could 8, 2021, in contrast with 18,860 constructive assessments in a related interval the earlier yr (between August 25, 2019, and Could 2, 2020). The virus appeared to vanish during the last yr.

Nonetheless, an elevated quantity of instances of RSV in Canada this summer time, as in different jurisdictions, might stretch well being care assets in pediatric intensive care items (ICUs). Most pregnant girls and really younger infants didn’t develop immunity in the earlier season, so youngsters could develop extra extreme sickness this yr.

In anticipation of a potential resurgence of RSV, the authors counsel:

Reference: “Potential resurgence of respiratory syncytial virus in Canada” by Pascal M. Lavoie, Frederic Reicherz, Alfonso Solimano and Joanne M. Langley, 26 July 2021, Canadian Medical Affiliation Journal.
DOI: 10.1503/cmaj.210919
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