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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 11  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 291-295

Managing bronchiolitis in pediatric patients: Current evidence

1 Department of Paediatrics, Mazumdar Shaw Medical Centre, Paediatric Intensive Care Unit, Narayana Health City, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Paediatrics, Mazumdar Shaw Medical Centre, Narayana Health City, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Hiremath Sagar
Room No – C 12, First Floor, Department of Pediatrics, Mazumdar Shaw Medical Centre, Narayana Health City, Bommasandra, Anekal Taluk, Bengaluru - 560 099, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijrc.ijrc_153_22

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Background: Acute bronchiolitis is an inflammatory process affecting small airways. Although most cases are self-limiting, it is still one of the most common causes of hospitalization below 24 months of age. Treatment is mainly supportive. The purpose of this narrative review was to look for recent evidence in the management of bronchiolitis. Methods: PubMed, EMBASE, Global Health, MEDLINE, SCOPUS, and Cochrane database searches were performed using keywords such as bronchiolitis, management, bronchodilators, nebulized epinephrine, corticosteroids, and hypertonic saline. Systematic reviews, original articles, and clinical practice guidelines with evidence for bronchiolitis management were included during our search. We excluded guidelines and clinical trials which solely focused on high-risk children, articles by a single author, and trials that are not part of a clinical practice guideline. Discussion: The safety and efficacy of various therapies for bronchiolitis such as bronchodilators, epinephrine, hypertonic saline, and corticosteroid were analyzed. Bronchodilators have not shown consistent benefits in bronchiolitis and may be tried in the selected population. Current evidence does not suggest routine use of nebulized epinephrine in bronchiolitis except as rescue therapy in selected cases. Hypertonic saline showed positive results in some studies but questions still remain regarding its effectiveness in all. Recent trials also do not support the use of systemic or inhaled corticosteroids in bronchiolitis. Conclusion: In conclusion, there is no strong evidence to routinely recommend the use of bronchodilator, epinephrine, hypertonic saline, or corticosteroids in acute bronchiolitis. Supportive care still remains the mainstay of therapy for bronchiolitis.

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