Influence of viral and bacterial respiratory infections on exacerbations and symptom severity in childhood asthma

Pediatr Pulmonol Suppl. 1997:16:88-9. doi: 10.1002/ppul.1950230851.


The recent development of PCR for the diagnosis of respiratory viral infection has highlighted the importance of these infections in acute exacerbations of asthma. Rhinoviruses are important in all age groups, but particularly over 1 yr, while the role of RSV in bronchiolitis and wheezing in infants has been reaffirmed. Recent studies using the same technique for the detection of C. pneumoniae suggest a high prevalence of chronic infection in asthmatic children, and that the immune response to this organism may play a pathological role. These studies now require confirmation with larger carefully controlled studies.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Bacterial / analysis
  • Asthma / diagnosis
  • Asthma / etiology*
  • Bacterial Infections / complications*
  • Bacterial Infections / microbiology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Chlamydia Infections / diagnosis
  • Chlamydia Infections / physiopathology
  • Chlamydophila pneumoniae / immunology
  • Chronic Disease
  • Humans
  • Influenza, Human / complications
  • Influenza, Human / virology
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Respiratory Tract Infections / complications*
  • Respiratory Tract Infections / diagnosis
  • Respiratory Tract Infections / microbiology*
  • Respiratory Tract Infections / virology
  • Severity of Illness Index


  • Antibodies, Bacterial