investigations in RSV

Last reviewed 08/2021

Radiologic features are variable depending upon the extent of the infection.

  • chest radiology of children with bronchiolitis may show hyperexpansion, peribronchial thickening, and infiltrates ranging from diffuse interstitial infiltrates to segmental or lobar consolidation (1).

Diagnosis is established by isolation of RSV from respiratory secretions, particularly, sputum or throat swabs. Immunologic reactions such as ELISA are then used to detect the virus in tissue culture.

Techniques based on complement fixation or neutralisation of antibody titres are more valuable in older children and adults.

A bedside immunoassay kit is now available which detects RSV; confirmation should be sought with the laboratory tests detailed above.