During the COVID-19 pandemic where has respiratory syncytial virus gone?

Pediatr Pulmonol. 2021 Oct;56(10):3106-3109. doi: 10.1002/ppul.25582. Epub 2021 Jul 26.


The diffusion of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and the implementation of restrictive measures led to a drastic reduction of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) diffusion. Few RSV cases have been detected worldwide, even after the removal of the restrictions. We review the current literature and present possible explanations on why there has been a significant reduction of RSV detection during the COVID-19 pandemic. We also hypothesize what may happen when RSV begins to circulate again. The increase of an immunologically naïve population, with infants born from mothers who have not reinforced their immunity to RSV, could lead to greater RSV epidemics in the coming seasons. It is crucial to prepare the scientific community and to keep RSV surveillance active to avoid dramatic consequences.

Keywords: TB; epidemiology; infections; international health; pneumonia; viral.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • COVID-19 / epidemiology
  • COVID-19 / prevention & control*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Pandemics
  • Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infections* / epidemiology
  • Respiratory Syncytial Virus, Human*
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Seasons