What is it?

Croup is an infection that often comes after a child has a bad cold or flu in the upper respiratory tract. Croup often strikes in the middle of the night. The child wakes up with breathing difficulties and rapid breathing, using all chest muscles. A barking, often spasmodic, cough and hoarseness develop. Low-grade fever is common, but often fever of 38°C to 40°C is associated with the onset of croup.

What to do?

A doctor should be consulted promptly when a child develops any of the signs of croup, especially when a barking cough sets in and you hear a rough, raspy, high-pitched sound when the child breathes in. Admission to hospital may be necessary, and your child may be given oxygen in a tent or through a tube. If a bacterial infection is suspected, antibiotics will be given.

For more detailed info on Common Childhood Conditions, go to Health24.

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