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An Esp Pediatr. 2001 Oct;55(4):345-54.

[Acute bronchiolitis: evaluation of evidence-based therapy].

[Article in Spanish]

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Servicio de Críticos y Urgencias Pediátricas. Hospital Clínico Universitario de Santiago de Compostela.


Bronchiolitis is the leading cause of lower respiratory tract infection in infants and produces significant morbidity. Limited progress has been made in the treatment of this disease and, in many cases, the therapy employed is controversial and mainly based on general recommendations and not on evidence-based strategies. This report uses evidence-based methodology to provide a critical review of the data available on the treatment of acute bronchiolitis (understood as the first episode of respiratory syncytial virus bronchiolitis in a previously healthy infant). After this analysis, we conclude that the only justifiable therapeutic interventions in these patients are supportive treatment, nebulized epinephrine and mechanical ventilation. Other therapies such us physiotherapy, nebulization, heliox, anticholinergics or exogenous surfactant, among others, require further randomized controlled trials to determine their utility. No evidence supports the routine use of corticosteroids, beta-adrenergic drugs, antibiotics, immunoglobulins, interferon, vitamin A or ribavirin in these patients. Finally, we consider that a national consensus review for the implementation of evidence-based clinical practical guidelines on the management of acute bronchiolitis would be of great interest.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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