Local Doctors Come Together to Educate Public on RSV

Media event Thursday discussed signs, symptoms and treatments of common respiratory virus 

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Jan. 18, 2019) – An informational media event hosted in coordination with the Allen County Health Department, Lutheran Health Network and Parkview Health to educate the public on a common respiratory virus currently on the rise in the community took place Thursday.

Media were invited to hear from local pediatric experts on respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV.

“It can be a scary time for any parent when a child gets sick – even with something common like RSV,” said Dr. Deborah McMahan, health commissioner for the Allen County Department of Health. “We want to take the fear out of the unknown by providing information for families on what to look for, how RSV is treated and just help people become more familiar with what they are seeing.”

Stefanie Paulson, MD, and Tony GiaQuinta, MD, joined Dr. McMahan to discuss common symptoms, transmission and treatment of RSV and answer questions from the media.

Dr. Paulson is a pediatric hospitalist providing care to children requiring hospitalization due to infectious, respiratory or chronic illnesses at Lutheran Children’s Hospital and the new pediatric units at Dupont Hospital. Dr. GiaQuinta is a pediatric specialist with Parkview Physicians Group and serves as the president of the Indiana Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, RSV is a common respiratory virus that usually causes mild, cold-like symptoms and can be serious, especially for infants and older adults. Common symptoms of RSV infection usually include runny nose, decreased appetite, coughing, sneezing, fever and wheezing. Symptoms usually appear in stages and not all at once. RSV can also cause more severe infections such as bronchiolitis, an inflammation of the small airways in the lung, and pneumonia, an infection of the lungs. It is the most common cause of bronchiolitis and pneumonia in children younger than 1 year of age.


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