The aim of this retrospective analysis was to provide information on how infections with respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) differ in symptoms, clinical course, outcome, and utilization of hospital care. We investigated 748 polymerase chain reaction results from symptomatic children aged 0-4 years in Cologne, Germany. One hundred sixty-nine patients tested positive for RSV (22.6%) and 24 children for SARS-CoV-2 (3.2%). Symptomatic patients with RSV infection were hospitalized significantly longer. RSV-positive patients needed oxygen supplementation significantly more often as well as high-flow therapy. With regard to care efforts, RSV-infected patients put higher pressure on the hospital and utilized more hospital resources.
Keywords: COVID-19; Germany; RSV infections; children; hospitalization.
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