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Understanding and managing respiratory infections in children and young adults with neurological impairment

Tijdschriftbijdrage - Tijdschriftartikel

INTRODUCTION: Patients with neurocognitive impairment (NI) have multiple medical needs, with respiratory problems leading to an important reduction in quality of life and life expectancy. We aimed to explain that the origin of chronic respiratory symptoms in patients with NI is multifactorial. AREAS COVERED: In people with NI there is a high prevalence of swallowing dysfunction and hypersalivation inducing aspiration; cough efficacy is decreased resulting in chronic lung infection; sleep-disordered breathing is frequent and muscle mass is abnormal due to malnutrition. Technical investigations are not always specific and sensitive enough to better diagnose the causes of the respiratory symptoms; moreover, they can sometimes be difficult to perform in this vulnerable patient population. We provide a clinical pathway to adopt to identify, prevent, and treat respiratory complications in children and young adults with NI. A holistic approach in discussion with all care providers and the parents is highly recommended. EXPERT OPINION: The care for people with NI and chronic respiratory problems is challenging. The interplay between several causative factors may be difficult to entangle. Well-performed clinical research in this field is largely missing and should be encouraged. Only then, evidence-based clinical care will become possible for this vulnerable patient group.
Tijdschrift: Expert review of respiratory medicine
ISSN: 1747-6348
Issue: 3
Volume: 17
Pagina's: 203 - 211
Jaar van publicatie:2023