Croup, or laryngotracheobronchitis refers to a group of symptoms resulting from infection or inflammation of the laryngeal area. It is commonly characterized by inspiratory stridor, barking or 'seal's bark' cough, and hoarseness.
- 1 Naturopathic Assessment
- 2 Common Symptoms
- 3 Naturopathic Treatment
- 4 References
The most common causes of croup include::
- Croup is generally caused by infections such as Parainfluenza virus types 1 (most common strain), 2, and 3 (most common cause),Influenza A and B viruses, Rhinoviruses, Respiratory syncytial virus, Spasmodic croup
- Recurrent upper respiratory tract infection
- Upper tracheal anatomic abnormalities (such as stricture or stenosis)
- History of prolonged or traumatic endotracheal intubation
- Has the child shown signs of sore throat, runny nose, or fever? These symptoms often precede or accompany croup.
- Is the child in a daycare program? The child may have acquired a viral infection that brought on croup.
- Are the symptoms relieved by sitting up rather than lying down? Severe symptoms of croup may manifest when lying down as opposed to sitting.
- Did the child cough or choke on food or a foreign object before the onset of the symptoms?
- Is the child immunized against diptheria and Haemophilus influenzae type B?
Diagnostic testing for croup involves:
- Checking the patient for fever. Note: temperature may only be slightly elevated, rarely reaching 39 degrees celsius.
- Determining if the stridor is intermittent or continuous.
- Listening for diminished breath sounds. Rhonchi, scattered crackles and wheezing may be associated with a lower airway disease.
- Neck radiograph: to rule out airway obstruction due to the presence of a foreign body
- A complete blood culture if severe bacterial infection is suspected
- Pulmonary function test
Related Symptoms and Conditions
Some commonly related symptoms and conditions include:
- Parainfluenza virus 1 (most common strain) 2 and 3 (most common cause)
- Influenza A and B viruses
- Respiratory syncytial virus
- Mycoplasma pneumoniae
- Rubeola (measles)
- Herpes simplex
- Staphylococcus aureus
Croup is often characterized by the following:
- Inspiratory stridor, 'seal's bark' cough, tachypnea, and hoarseness
- Symptoms which are exascerbated while lying on back or at night
- Diagnosis based on exclusion of epiglottitis or bacterial tracheitis
- Hallmark of having a fluctuating course, which worsens at night
- Commonly caused by a viral infection of the upper and lower respiratory tract in young children and can also be allergy based
Symptoms of croup often include:
- Inspiratory stridor, sometimes accompanied by chest wall retraction
- Rales, rhonchi, wheezing, and stridor on expiration in severely affected patients who may have lower respiratory tract infection
- Respiratory rate elevated to 35 to 45 breaths per minute. This may decrease in patients with severe croup due to severe upper airway obstruction
- Croup often presents with a fluctuating course, worsening or improving within an hour, but often worsening at night.
- Denny FW, Murphy TF, Clyde Jr. WA, Collier AM, Henderson FW, Senior RS, Sheaffer CI, Conley III WG, and Christian RM. (1983) Croup: an 11-year study in pediatric practice. Pediatrics;6(1):871-876.
- Zach M, Erben A, and Olinsky A. (1981) Croup, recurrent croup, allergy, and airways hyper-reactivity. Arch Dis Child;56:336-341.
- Skolnik, N (1993)Croup.The Journal of Family Practice, 37(2):165-170