Effectiveness of drug therapies to treat or prevent respiratory syncytial virus infection-related morbidity

Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2003 Oct;4(10):1801-8. doi: 10.1517/14656566.4.10.1801.


Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection causes a huge burden to the health service, as it results in a large number of in-patient days each year and increases the risk of asthma in childhood. In the acute phase, therapy is supportive as bronchodilators and corticosteroids have resulted, at best, only in short-term benefits; promising treatments for ventilated patients, such as exogenous surfactant, require further testing. Passive immunoprophylaxis reduces hospital admission in high risk groups. In the prevention of chronic respiratory morbidity following RSV infection, however, studies are needed to determine whether immunoprophylaxis will have a useful role and to identify which drug treatment will be most cost-effective.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones / economics
  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones / therapeutic use
  • Antiviral Agents / economics
  • Antiviral Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Bronchodilator Agents / economics
  • Bronchodilator Agents / therapeutic use
  • Chronic Disease
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Humans
  • Immunization, Passive* / economics
  • Immunoglobulins, Intravenous / economics
  • Immunoglobulins, Intravenous / therapeutic use*
  • Nitric Oxide / economics
  • Nitric Oxide / therapeutic use
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infections* / drug therapy
  • Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infections* / prevention & control
  • Respiratory Syncytial Viruses / drug effects
  • Respiratory Syncytial Viruses / immunology
  • Respiratory Syncytial Viruses / isolation & purification
  • Respiratory System Agents / economics
  • Respiratory System Agents / therapeutic use*


  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones
  • Antiviral Agents
  • Bronchodilator Agents
  • Immunoglobulins, Intravenous
  • Respiratory System Agents
  • Nitric Oxide