Background: Severe respiratory disease associated with enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) has been reported in hospitalized pediatric patients. Virologic and clinical characteristics of EV-D68 infections exclusively in patients presenting to a hospital Emergency Department (ED) or urgent care have not been well defined. Methods: Mid-nasal swabs from pediatric patients with respiratory symptoms presenting to the ED or urgent care were evaluated using a commercial multiplex PCR platform. Specimens positive for rhinovirus/enterovirus (HRV/EV) were subsequently tested using real-time reverse-transcriptase PCR for EV-D68. The PCR cycle threshold (CT) was used as a viral load proxy. Clinical outcomes were compared between patients with EV-D68 and patients without EV-D68 who tested positive for HRV/EV. Results: From August to December 2014, 511 swabs from patients with HRV/EV were available. EV-D68 was detected in 170 (33%) HRV/EV-positive samples. In multivariable models adjusted for age and underlying asthma, patients with EV-D68 were more likely to require hospitalization for respiratory reasons (odds ratio (OR): 3.11, CI: 1.85-5.25), require respiratory support (OR: 1.69, CI: 1.09-2.62), have confirmed/probable lower respiratory tract infection (LRTI; OR: 3.78, CI: 2.03-7.04), and require continuous albuterol or steroids (OR: 3.91, CI: 2.22-6.88 and OR: 4.73, CI: 2.65-8.46, respectively). Higher EV-D68 viral load was associated with need for respiratory support and LRTI in multivariate models. Conclusions: Among pediatric patients presenting to the ED or urgent care, EV-D68 causes more severe disease than non-EV-D68 HRV/EV independent of underlying asthma. High viral load was associated with worse clinical outcomes. Rapid and quantitative viral testing may help identify and risk stratify patients.
- respiratory infection
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Infectious Diseases