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Croup (Angina Trachialis) Print E-mail

Dr. Kennedy Croup is a respiratory condition occuring primarily in children, particularly from 2 to 4 years of age, due to an infection of the respiratory tree - the larynx (voice box), the trachea (windpipe), and the bronchial tubes. The symptoms of croup include a cough that sounds like a barking seal and a harsh crowing sound when the child is inhaling. While easily treatable, nevertheless this barking sound is quite alarming to parents who have never experienced it before. A low-grade fever (around 100° to 101°) is common. The child as well as the parents may become very frightened. The major concern in croup is breathing difficulty as the air passages narrow. Croup is most often caused by a virus, less often by a bacteria. Treatment includes moist air, saline (salt water) nose drops, decongestants, cough suppressants, pain medication, fluids, and occasionally antibiotics. The classical picture involves parents standing in a closed bathroom with child in arms and doors closed with the hot shower running filling the room with steam. This treatment is usually effective within 30 minutes allowing the cough to subside and sleep to resume. Close monitoring of the breathing of a child with croup is valuable, especially at night when croup usually gets worse. Croup may last up to a week. Each night tends to be better than the last. While most children recover from croup without hospitalization, some children can develop trouble breathing that is life-threatening. Therefore, staying in close contact with the doctor during this illness is important. The condition is also known as angina trachialis (reflecting the pain in the trachea).



The information in this article is not meant to be medical advice.�Treatment for a medical condition should come at the recommendation of your personal physician.

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