Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV)

When the issue is more than just a cold

What is RSV?

RSV is a very common respiratory
virus. At first, symptoms of an RSV infection may resemble those of a cold and may include:

– Low-grade fever
Runny nose
Dry cough
Sore throat
Mild headache

Is my baby at risk?

Children born prematurely or with certain lung or heart problems have a greater risk of getting a more serious RSV infection.  What conditions cause a higher risk for
serious RSV infections?

– Babies born prematurely
– Children with certain types of chronic lung problems
– Children with certain types of heart problems

How can I protect my child?

RSV is spread easily through sneezing, coughing, or by touching something that might have the virus on it.

– Wash your hands often and ask others to do the same
Avoid crowds and other young children, especially those with a cold or fever
Keep toys, clothes, blankets, and sheets clean
Don’t let anyone smoke in your home or near your baby


1. Jones A. RSV: when it’s more than just a cold. Updated November 4, 2019. Accessed June 22, 2020.

2. Piedimonte G, Perez MK. Respiratory syncytial virus infection and bronquiolitis. Pediatr Rev. 2014;35(12):519-530. doi:10.1542/pir.35-12-519 3. Goldstein M, Phillips R, DeVincenzo JP, et al. National Perinatal Association 2018 Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) Prevention Clinical Practice Guideline: an evidence-based interdisciplinary collaboration. Neonatology Today. 2017;12:1-27.