A simple breakdown of pesky winter bugs.
What is the flu?
The flu is a specific virus that changes slightly from year to year. It’s characterized by sudden fever, fatigue, chills and cold symptoms. The flu affects all ages and usually lasts 10 days or less.
What is RSV?
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) begins like a cold but can include more serious respiratory effects (croupy cough, difficulty breathing) and may develop into bronchiolitis, pneumonia or infection. RSV is most threatening during infancy and frequently results in hospitalization.
What are HPIVs?
Human parainfluenza viruses manifest as common colds or croup, but like RSV, they can lead to repeated infections and eventually pneumonia, bronchitis or bronchiolitis. According to the CDC, “The highest rates of serious HPIV illnesses occur among young children.”