North Canyon Medical Center offers a Respiratory Outpatient Clinic (ROC) that provides support for children 8 weeks to 24 months old with Bronchiolitis, commonly referred to as RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus) for the virus that most often causes Bronchiolitis. With a referral from your child’s primary care provider, our team of respiratory therapists will complete an assessment of your child’s condition and then treat accordingly. Treatments include small volume nebulizers and suctioning. These treatments relieve the labored breathing and improve your child’s ability to breathe, sleep, eat and drink. Therefore, helping to avoid additional complications like dehydration and hospitalization.

Bronchiolitis is a viral infection of the lower breathing passages. It is a very common illness in infants and young children less than 2 years of age. Bronchiolitis occurs most often between November and April. It affects the entire breathing passageways, including the bronchioles, which are the smallest air passages in the lungs. Infection causes inflammation, which leads to partial or complete blockage of the air passages.

Several different viruses that cause colds and flu-like illness can cause bronchiolitis but Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) is the most frequent cause of bronchiolitis. Young children catch these viruses from close contact with older children, family members, or others who are sick. The virus is spread when a sick person coughs or sneezes near another person’s face. The virus can also be spread by hands that touch contaminated objects and then touched the eyes or nose. The illness begins about 3-7 days after exposure.

Bronchiolitis usually begins as a cold and symptoms often include:

  • Fever
  • Runny nose or nasal stuffiness
  • Mild cough
  • Less appetite
  • Mild problems breathing

As the virus spreads to the small airways of the lungs (1-3 days later), a whistling sound called wheezing may be heard when the child breathes out. At this time, symptoms worsen and broaden to include:

  • Rapid breathing (60-80 breaths per minute)
  • mild to severe breathing problems
  • Constant coughing
  • Problems eating
  • Apnea – babies who were born early or who are under the age of 2 months, may stop breathing for short periods of time.

In healthy infants and children, Bronchiolitis usually goes away on its own but for many children the symptoms can become severe and hospitalization is required.

If your child was diagnosed with Bronchiolitis (RSV) please ask your physician for a referral to our Respiratory Outpatient Clinic for additional treatment.