UW Health expert says testing most kids for RSV may be unnecessary

MADISON, Wis. (CBS 58) -- Experts at UW Health in Madison say that testing for Respiratory Syncytial Virus, or RSV, is not needed in most cases. They say disease and symptom management do not change with an official diagnosis.

While there are no medications specifically designed to treat RSV, experts say there are some ways to treat it at home. This includes proper nasal suction, staying hydrated as well as using ibuprofen for fever management.

Experts recommend not giving children over-the-counter cough or cold medicines because it could actually make their symptoms worse.

Dr. Gregory DeMuri, who specializes in Pediatric Infectious Disease at UW Health Kids compared it to having a bad cold, "I think the biggest thing is most kids have already had RSV and they haven't been tested. We didn't do this before COVID, for most children, and that's because most kids get over it on their own and it's mainly going to be just a bad cold."

The main symptoms of RSV include runny nose, coughing, sneezing, congestion and fever.

If a child is struggling to breathe, that is a sign to get medical attention immediately.

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