Diagnosis and management of recurrent respiratory tract infections in children: A practical guide

Urs Beat Schaad, Susanna Esposito, Cem Hasan Razi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Context: Respiratory tract infections (RTIs) affect children all over the world and are associated with significant morbidity and mortality. RTIs are usually triggered by viruses, though bacterial infections are also common. Results: Children are particularly susceptible to RTIs due to the relative immaturity of their immune systems, and genetic factors (such as family history of atopy) and/or environmental factors (such as exposure to pollution and pathogens) also render certain populations more vulnerable to infection. Furthermore, RTIs tend to be recurrent and can result in multiple infections per year. The management of recurrent RTIs poses a tremendous challenge for physicians, who have a limited armamentarium with which to alleviate patients’ symptoms, treat their disease, and prevent recurrences. Conclusions: Though antibiotics are rarely indicated, they are often still used to treat RTIs. The resulting increase in bacterial resistance, the lack of treatment efficacy, and drug-related side effects all underscore the need for alternative strategies to manage recurrent RTIs. This article uses a typical pediatric case study to review central issues in the diagnosis and management of recurrent RTIs in children, with an emphasis on the role of immunomodulation as a preventive strategy.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere31039
JournalArchives of Pediatric Infectious Diseases
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 27 2015


  • Antibiotics
  • Bacterial immunostimulant
  • Common cold
  • Infection
  • Pharyngitis
  • Respiratory tract
  • Rhinosinusitis
  • Upper respiratory tract

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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