Maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health

Bronchodilators and other medications for the treatment of wheeze-associated illnesses in young children

World Health Organization

Publication details

Number of pages: 37
Publication date: 1993
Languages: English
WHO reference number: ARI/93.29



Acute respiratory infections (ARI) are a major cause of morbidity and mortality in under-five children in developing countries. The mortality burden is principally constituted by pneumonia. The case management algorithms are primarily intended to prevent mortality due to bacterial pneumonia. However, a considerable proportion of clinically diagnosed pneumonia may now have associated wheezing, and this entity has a different epidemiology with resultant implications for preventive and case management strategies.

This document focuses on the significance of wheeze, its’ causes, and most importantly on the management of wheezing illnesses in young children in countries that have high child mortality, where bacterial pneumonia is a significant public health problem.