Cuero physician sends warning of RSV cases spike
The CDC reported an unprecedented spike in the respiratory illness in younger children.
CUERO, Texas – “It’s crazy the number of [RSV] cases,” said Jennifer L. Gonzales, MD with Cuero Regional Hospital.
Gonzales works in the emergency room and said she barely saw cases of RSV due to facial coverings and a decrease in gatherings this past year.
But now, since safety measures have slowly lifted across the state, RSV rates have gone through the roof, Gonzales said.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported an unprecedented spike in the respiratory illness in younger children.
Gonzales said RSV is a virus that attacks the upper airways.
It can cause a common cold to adults.
“RSV is spread by respiratory droplets, you cough or sneeze or kiss your little babies’ face, [and] that’s how it spreads” she said.
For younger children than the age of two, RSV can cause bronchiolitis, which is a common lung infection.
“The children right now that are coming with RSV, they seem sicker,” added Gonzales. “I don’t ever recall, even in years past, having this many sick kiddos in our hospital.”
25 New Now asked Gonzales if neighboring hospitals are also experiencing a spike of RSV cases:
“I’ve heard that in our neighboring hospitals the pediatrics are full of RSV,” said Gonzales. “We have more pediatric patients in the hospital now than at any given day.”
Gonzales said that in June, the hospital had a 10 percent positivity rate of RSV cases.
“We’ve got mommas and babies getting sick, I am working ER today and I already admitted a patient .. a little one,” she shared.
She added that in just the first 14 days in July, about 40 to 50 patients were tested and of those, more than half were positive for RSV.
“Don’t let people kiss all over your babies face and stay away from large crowds and stay home if you feel sick,” said Gonzales.
Gonzales added that the virus can live on surfaces and the air for a period of time. She recommended to spray a disinfectant.
“RSV … there’s not a good treatment for it, there’s not an antibiotic that I give because it’s a bacterial infection,” said Gonzales.
According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, some RSV symptoms include unusual rapid breathing, bluish color of the lips or a croupy cough.
The majority of children hospitalized for RSV are under the age of six months.
Click here to learn more about RSV and symptoms.
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