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EV-D68 virus: Symptoms, Causes And Risk factors

EV-D68 virus is also known as Enterovirus D68. EV-D68 virus belongs to a larger group of viruses which is known as enteroviruses. This group is including more than 100 different types of enteroviruses which together affect millions of people all around the world. Commonly, enteroviruses affect the gastrointestinal tract and they can cause diarrhea and stomach flu.

But the EV-D68 virus is mainly associated with respiratory disease and this is a reason why it is more similar to the human rhinovirus which is a type of virus that affects the respiratory tract. The EV-D68 virus was firstly identified in California in 1962 in 4 children who suffered from pneumonia and bronchiolitis (which are type of infection of the airways) [1]. Until recently, only a few isolated cases have been identified since that time. In the past five years outbreaks have happened in the Canada, the United States, the Netherlands, the Philippines and the Japan.

EV-D68 virus

It is noticed that the EV-D68 virus infections happen most commonly in summer and fall. There are some studies in which are said that children under age of 5 and children with asthma have the highest chances of getting EV-D68 virus infection but also, it can affect adults who suffer from asthma and people with weak immune system. [2]

You should wash your hands often so in this way you are reducing your chances of getting EV-D68 virus. You should scrub with the soap for twenty seconds, especially before you are going to eat. You should not touch your mouth, nose or eyes unless you have just washed your hands.

If you know that someone is sick with the EV-D68 virus, then you should not kiss, hug or share food with him. If you have some family member that is ill from EV-D68 virus, then it is a good idea to regularly disinfect surfaces which are touched a lot, such as doorknobs and toys. The person who suffers from EV-D68 virus should always cover his mouth when he sneeze or cough. Also, he should wear a mask and wash his hands often. Also, he can stay in a separate room so it can help you to stay away from the infection.

EV-D68 virus Symptoms:

The EV-D68 virus can cause mild to severe symptoms which depends on the risk factors of the infected person, such as having a weak immune system. The mild symptoms of EV-D68 virus infection include:

  • Wheezing
  • Body and muscle aches
  • Sneezing
  • Cough
  • Runny nose
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Fever

When someone has some of the mentioned symptoms, then it can lead to further complications, such as pneumonia and even respiratory failure.

Also, the EV-D68 virus can cause symptoms which are common with other enteroviruses, such as

There was one case when a rare complication happened in two children in California which involved paralysis of one or more limbs. If you have noticed that you or your child has a cold with hard time breathing, then you should call him or her doctor as soon as possible. Also, if you have noticed that the symptoms of you or your child have worsened, then talk with your doctor as soon as possible.


The EV-D68 virus is causing respiratory illness which means that this virus is found in the respiratory secretions of the infected person. This means that the EV-D68 virus can be transmitted from one person to another through mucus or saliva. [3]

Also, if the infected person with EV-D68 virus touches a surface or sneezes on it or coughs on it, then it can become contaminated which means that others who touch this surface can become infected. Also, this virus can be spread when someone has a close contact with another person, such as hugging, kissing or shaking hands.

Your doctor can identify this virus by testing fluid samples taken from your nose or throat. He or she must sent the samples to a special lab for testing.

Risk factors:

Every single person can get this virus but children who are between age of 6 weeks to 16 years can be especially vulnerable. Also, infants and people who have immune system disorders are having highest risk to develop severe complications. [4,5]


[1] You H. Enterovirus D68. Medscape. 2021. Retrieved from

[2] Rao S, Messacar K, Torok MR, et al. Enterovirus-D68 in critically ill children: a comparison with pandemic H1N1 influenza. Pediatric Critical Care Medicine. 2016;17(11):1023–31. doi:10.1097/PCC.0000000000000922

[3] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Enterovirus D68. Retrieved from

[4] Calvo C, Cuevas MT, Pozo F, et al. Respiratory infections by enterovirus D68 in outpatients and inpatients Spanish children. The Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal. 2016 ;35(1):45-9. doi:10.1097/INF.0000000000000908

[5] University of Rochester Medical Center. Enteroviruses in children. Retrieved from

Neem Mayur
Neem Mayur
Mayur Neem, a certified dietician having more than 5 years of experience in the field of diet practice. He is working as a diet expert and offering services to body builders, sports persons, celebrities, etc. He is lover of natural remedies and loves to spend most of his free time in his organic farm and offers expert advice on organic farming to local farmers. He is available through [email protected]


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