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What pre-existing condition makes enterovirus D68 more dangerous?

Dr. Alan Greene, MD
Pediatrician

Enterovirus D68 is more dangerous for children who have an underlying respiratory condition, like asthma. In this video, pediatrician Alan Greene, MD, discusses how children's less-developed immune systems and smaller airways also increase risk.

Children with asthma are at higher risk for severe symptoms from enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) infection and other respiratory illnesses. Parents should follow guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to maintain control of their child's illness.

The CDC recommends that you:

  • Discuss and update your asthma action plan with your child's primary care provider.
  • Be sure that your child takes prescribed asthma medications as directed, especially long-term control medication(s).
  • Be sure that your child keeps his reliever medication with him at all times.
  • Get your child a flu shot when it's available.
  • If your child develops new or worsening asthma symptoms, follow the steps of the asthma action plan. If the symptoms don't go away, call your child's doctor right away.
  • Parents should make sure the child’s caregiver is aware of his condition—and know how to help if your child experiences any symptoms related to asthma.

Naturally, you should follow these guidelines yourself if you have asthma and become infected by enterovirus D68.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.