Jun 21, 2021 - News
Why an uptick in RSV cases in Iowa is putting kids at risk
A woman wipes her nose with a tissue.
On The Screen, Radiography Of Normal Sinuses. Photo: BSIP/UIG Via Getty Images

More Iowans are testing positive for a common virus that's normally seen in the fall and winter.

Driving the news: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this month warned there's an uptick in RSV — a respiratory virus that feels like a cold.

  • Infants and children may be at risk of severe illness because masks and other COVID-19 restrictions led to reduced exposure to RSV over the past 15 months.

Here in Iowa, our cases aren't as severe as the southern U.S., but we saw an uptick starting in April.

  • RSV is most commonly spread through coughs, sneezes and contaminated surfaces.
  • It's also the most common cause of bronchitis and pneumonia in children under 1 year old.

What's next: Because it's unusual for the virus to spread over the summer months, the IDPH says medical experts can't predict how it will spread or when it may peak.


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