Bronchiolitis is an infection of the lower part of the lung called bronchioles.  It usually affects children younger than 2 years of age.  In most cases bronchiolitis goes away on its own, however, some children with bronchiolitis need to be seen by a doctor or need hospitalization.  Bronchiolitis is typically caused by Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV).  RSV infection is very common and contagious.  Most children have this infection at least once by the age of 2-3.  Re-infection is also very common, however it’s usually milder.  RSV is not something to worry about however in certain younger kids <2 years and certain high risk kids it can cause bronchiolitis or pneumonia.  RSV can occur in children older than 2 year, but typically do not cause bronchiolitis.  

Transmission of infection

  • Coughing
  • Sneezing
  • Sharing food or drinks
  • Direct contact

Signs and Symptoms of bronchiolitis

  • Mild cough, stuffy or runny nose, etc.
  • Fever (temperature higher than 100.4o F)
  • Decreased appetite
  • As infection progress other symptoms can start,
  • Worsening cough (can last for 14 days or longer)
  • Wheezing (usually last about 7 days)
  • Rapid breathing /trouble in breathing
  • Trouble eating and drinking (because lots of energy use in breathing)
  • Discoloration of lips and fingers (lack of supply of oxygen)

What Parents Can Do

  • In healthy child symptoms resolve in 1-2 week
  • Gentle suctioning of the nose
  • Encourage child to drink more liquids to prevent dehydration
  • Use humidifier in your child’s room
  • Treat fever with acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) if child appears uncomfortable with fever
  • Over the counter Cough and cold medications are not advisable as they may cause side effects and are not effective in the young child
  • Avoid secondhand smoke exposure
  • Watch for worsening symptoms very closely

When to Call Your Pediatrician

  • If child has breathing difficulties
  • If child is younger than 2 or 3 months and has a fever >100.4o F
  • Child older than 3 months and has fever >100.4o F for more than 3 days
  • Child shows signs of dehydration, such as a dry mouth, crying without tears, and urinating less often

Call 911

  • If your child stops breathing
  • Start to turn blue or very pale
  • Has hard time breathing
  • Start grunting
  • Looking tired of having hard breathing.


  • Washing your and your child’s hand often with soap and water or alcohol hand rubs
  • Staying away from other adult and children who are sick
  • Getting flu shot every year for you and your child

Epic Urgent and Family Care serves the following neighborhoods and zip code for bronchiolitis.  

Neighborhoods we serve: Palatine, Arlington Heights, Buffalo Grove, Inverness, Barrington, South Barrington, Rolling Meadows, Wheeling, Prospect Heights, Deerfield, Mount Prospect, Lake Zurich, Glenview, Vernon Hills, Hoffman Estates, Schaumburg, Elk Grove Village, Downers GroveZIP Codes we serve: 60004, 60074, 60010, 60011, 60005, 60007, 60008, 60015, 60016, 60018, 60025, 60047, 60061, 60062, 60067, 60656, 60089, 60090, 60106, 60107, 60169, 60192, 60193

Palatine Urgent Care, Self-pay urgent care, Palatine Vaccines, Pediatric Practice, Pap Smear in Palatine

Contact Us Today!

Palatine Location

(708) 733-7750

Streamwood Location

(630) 703-2711

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