Laryngopharyngeal reflux, the backflow of stomach contents into throat, may be the cause behind recurring croup among kids, which is a barking cough that may be accompanied by breathing difficulties.
This suggestion is based on the results of a new study presented at the 2008 American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) Annual Meeting and OTO EXPO in Chicago, Illinois.
Based on their findings, the researchers behind this study have come to the conclusion that children who suffer from several occurrences of croup should be evaluated for reflux disorders.
The symptoms of croup can be very upsetting to parents and caregivers, as they may be mistaken for choking or other serious airway issues.
It has been commonly believed that croup is caused by a virus, but upper airway complications have also been suggested.
The research team conducted an airway evaluation on 80 children with recurrent croup to see whether there had been any narrowing in the upper airways, which could indicate reflux.
It was observed that 33 per cent of the patients had narrowing in the airway, and 19 of them (73 per cent) also manifested laryngopharyngeal reflux.
The researchers said that many episodes of croup could be averted if it was determined that reflux was a component of the patient's diagnosis, and proper preventive treatment could be prescribed. (ANI)