Micah Ryan, M.D.
Fall is here, and with that comes cold and flu season. Day care centers and schools are breeding grounds for viruses, and the recent outbreak of Enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) in the Midwest has brought preventing the spread of germs to the forefront of parents’ and caretakers’ minds.
EV-D68 is a strain of enterovirus, a type of virus that most people have come across in the past without even realizing it. This particular strain is causing respiratory complications that are hospitalizing children across the Midwest.
More severe cases may present wheezing, rash and fever. If a child seems to be having excessive breathing complications – flared nostrils, sucking in at the ribs, quick and shallow breaths – parents and caregivers should contact a doctor immediately. In many cases, the children being hospitalized are the ones who come in to see a doctor a little later than they should.
Like all viruses, EV-D68 cannot be treated with antibiotics, so parents are encouraged to administer supportive care.
If a child is hospitalized, he or she may receive breathing assistance and treatment to help the immune system fight off the virus.
Prevention is key. This is done through frequent hand washing/sanitizing, good cough hygiene, staying home when sick and being observant when your child is sick!
Dr. Micah Ryan, pediatrician for Boys Town Pediatrics, visited Small Miracles Child Care in Omaha, Neb. to teach kids the importance of proper hygiene and how they can prevent the spread of germs.