A 5-year-old in Michigan has died after a battle with the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).
Audrey Lou Jandernoa fell victim to the virus, which acts as a common cold in adults but can be deadly to children and people with a weakened immune system.
“For now, the only way you can help prevent it is, like with every other illness, is through good hand-washing and keeping away from people who are ill,” Dr. Dan Mcgee, a pediatric hospitalist at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, told Fox17.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “RSV, is a common respiratory virus that usually causes mild, cold-like symptoms. Most people recover in a week or two, but RSV can be serious, especially for infants and older adults. In fact, RSV is the most common cause of bronchiolitis (inflammation of the small airways in the lung) and pneumonia (infection of the lungs) in children younger than 1 year of age in the United States. It is also a significant cause of respiratory illness in older adults.”
Virtually all children get an RSV infection by the time they are 2 years old, the agency added. Sometimes that can lead to bronchiolitis, or pneumonia, as was the case with Audrey.
“One to two out of every 100 children younger than 6 months of age with RSV infection may need to be hospitalized. Those who are hospitalized may require oxygen, intubation, and/or mechanical ventilation (help with breathing). Most improve with this type of supportive care and are discharged in a few days,” the agency stated.
Friends and family remembered the 5-year-old as a happy girl.
“Audrey was a shining example of love for one another to so many relatives and friends. She was a vivacious, fun-loving child who took great joy in experiencing all aspects of life and took her world by storm,” her obituary stated.
“Sweet Audrey Lou was unstoppable and spread her contagious smile to all she met,” it said.