We’ll have to wait for the bronchiolitis vaccine

Begona Fernandez |

Madrid (EFE).- There is no effective pharmacological treatment and in the near term there will be no outbreak of bronchiolitis that destroys pediatric emergency care, but vaccines for minors and pregnant women are expected to be approved in two to three years, which are not a treatment in itself, but a preventive measure diseases.

David Andina, a member of the Spanish Society for Pediatric Emergency Care (SEUP), told EFE about this in an interview, who believes that preventive measures such as vaccines will give immunity to pregnant mothers and children, as well as a single injection of monoclonal antibodies. which is currently reserved for children with comorbidities with monthly administration.

Andina, an emergency pediatrician at a Madrid Community Hospital, insists that bronchiolitis cannot be treated like other respiratory infections and stresses that the emergency department is “screening children who need hospitalization because they are in respiratory distress, they are or oxygen is very low, in which case they are hospitalized and put on a pair of nasal goggles.

Spanish Society for Pediatric Emergency Care (SEUP) member David Andina says the bronchiolitis vaccineSpanish Society for Pediatric Emergency Care (SEUP) member David Andina says the bronchiolitis vaccine
Member of the Spanish Society of Pediatric Emergency Care (SEUP) David Andina during an interview with EFE. EFE/ Borja Sanchez-Trillo

“Other than that, we don’t have anything,” this pediatrician says, pointing to preventative handwashing, surface hygiene and mask wearing, especially for parents caring for children.

Andina notes that the observed spike in cases is “unusual”, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV)-associated bronchiolitis has been pushed forward several weeks and has resulted in an alarming increase in pediatric emergency and intensive care unit (UCI) hospitalizations.” much higher than we are used to.”

If this course continues until Christmas, the situation will be dramatic.

Andina explains that what worries most pediatricians is that it is not known when the peak of the curve will come, as happened with covid, and warns that if the level of hospitalizations continues, as in these weeks, the situation at Christmas will be like an emergency, for example, in the department intensive care, can “become dramatic.”

“The system cannot supply at this rate,” says this pediatrician, who recalls that some hospitals in Aragon, Catalonia and the Community of Madrid are already developing contingency plans because it is impossible to deal with the situation by conventional means. donations.

In these contingency plans, Andina warns that ICU beds should be set up outside of intensive care units and create spaces that are not normally reserved for child care, such as areas in adult emergency rooms.

He also believes that in order to deal with this explosion of cases, non-urgent juvenile surgery needs to be stopped.

The pandemic has changed the epidemiology of many viruses, including RSV

Bronchiolitis RSV is a typical disease of children under two years of age, although the most severe symptoms occur in children under three months of age and newborns, who are most often admitted to the emergency room and intensive care unit for days and even weeks.

The pandemic has changed the epidemiology of many viruses: RSV, which had circulated much less in two years, made more children, including older ones, susceptible to infection.

It is also believed that the mothers of these children, who were not exposed to the virus during pregnancy, did not have antibodies with which to protect their children at birth.

A view of the emergency room when they are now collapsed due to bronchiolitis.A view of the emergency room when they are now collapsed due to bronchiolitis.
Medical workers do their job in the emergency room. EFE/ Martha Perez

This virus circulates equally in all temperate countries in the northern hemisphere, and all of them are experiencing an early epidemic and collapse situation.

Looking to the future, Andina is asking health authorities to come up with contingency plans that could halt this expansion because a cure “is not coming soon.”

Regarding the strike in primary care, this pediatrician admits that many parents may seek emergency care, but he remembers that the mobilization of his colleagues from a family for decent work and more time for each patient “will benefit everyone”.

He asks parents of children with bronchiolitis “for patience and calmness” because emergency care for an explosion in cases requires a longer waiting time.

By Peter Kavinsky

Peter Kavinsky is the Executive Editor at