Severe hospitalized croup: Treatment trends and prognosis

Duncan S. Postma, Raleigh O. Jones, Harold C. Pillsbury

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


We have reviewed 43 cases of severe croup admitted from 1977 to 1981 at North Carolina Memorial Hospital. All patients were treated with mist, 23 (54%) of 43 were treated with racemic epinephrine, but only 7 (16%) of 43 were treated with steroids. None of the 5 patients who required intubation received steroids. Nine (36%) of 25 patients available for at least 6 months of follow-up had subsequent clinical diagnoses of asthma. We have concluded that: 1. males with subglottic narrowing on x-ray, high leukocyte counts, and no steroid treatment appear to have increased need for airway support; 2. while humidification and racemic epinephrine are accepted forms of treatment, steroids are still rarely used even in severe croup; 3. severe croup may be a signal for the later development of asthma. Because it is difficult to predict which patients with severe croup will need later airway management, we strongly recommend that all patients with croup requiring racemic epinephrine be treated with at least a single dose of 1.0 to 1.5 mg/kg of dexamethasone.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1170-1175
Number of pages6
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1984

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


Dive into the research topics of 'Severe hospitalized croup: Treatment trends and prognosis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this