What’s Going Around: COVID-19, RSV, bronchiolitis, strep throat, vomiting

News

Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health Physicians Roseville Pediatrics saw some cases of COVID-19. They saw a lot of enterovirus and hand, foot and mouth disease.

Pediatricians there treated a lot of vomiting; some from a stomach bug, some from enteroviral cases and some from COVID cases.

They are still seeing some bronchiolitis and despite the cooler weather, poison ivy cases are also on the rise.

Dr. Joan Thode offered the following advice about vomiting and diarrhea:

“Several viruses can cause vomiting and diarrhea as a result of disrupting the function of the cells of the stomach and intestines. It often starts with vomiting and ends with diarrhea, though the opposite could be the case. The diarrhea often resolves more slowly than the vomiting because the cells of the intestines become injured and therefore absorb less water, sugar and nutrients. The result is loose stool, and that will resolve once the virus is gone and the cells lining the intestines can be replaced. This healing process can take a week or longer, especially in younger kids.

The primary goal for a child with acute gastroenteritis is hydration. Water is the most ideal hydration in children over 12 months. Babies younger than 12 months still have immature kidneys, so hydration efforts should be coordinated with your child’s doctor. Electrolyte solutions like Pedialyte can be used for vomiting or diarrhea, keeping in mind that water should be the primary form of rehydration.

While your child’s doctor may prescribe a medication that reduces vomiting, anti-diarrheal medications are not advised, as they cause the infection to stay in the intestines longer.

Children of any age who cannot keep down any fluids due to vomiting and/or are showing signs of dehydration, including less urine output, fewer tears, dry mouth or cracked lips, should be evaluated by their doctor sooner rather than later.”

WellSpan Pediatric Medicine Physicians across South Central Pa. are seeing asthma attacks, bronchiolitis, which inclues congestion and difficulty breathing in infants, and viral stomach bugs.

They’re also seeing viral respiratory illnesses, including RSV, influenza and COVID-19. Their doctors also continue to see children struggling with mental health issues through this pandemic.

This week UPMC Children’s Community Pediatrics in York and Spring Grove are still seeing RSV and upper respiratory tract infections due to viral syndromes, but now strep throat is becoming prevalent.

Symptoms of viral illness may include nasal congestion, runny nose, sneezing, cough, and often a fever. If the fever is not easily reduced with over-the-counter fever reducers, or if the fevers go on and off for more than three days, then you should see your doctor or medical provider. If your child’s cough or symptoms are worsening and they are less playful and eating less, they should also be seen.

Strep throat, on the other hand, typically causes a sudden onset of sore throat, painful swallowing, headache, decreased appetite, and sometimes vomiting. Often there is a fever, and sometimes there is a fine, red rash on the face, chest, and groin as well. Usually, there are not cold symptoms like cough or runny nose, although the nose can feel congested. Strep throat is very contagious and needs to be treated with an antibiotic. So if your child has these symptoms, they should be seen by a medical provider.

There are many viruses that mimic strep throat, and the only way to know is to have a throat swab performed in the office. Some tests give immediate results and some take a couple of days at a lab.

Pediatricians at Penn State Children’s Hospital and Penn State Health Medical Group locations in Cumberland County have been seeing COVID-19, RSV, colds, strep throat and allergies.

The CVS MinuteClinic in York reports upper respiratory infections and skin infections this week.

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