Adenovirus Infections

What are adenoviruses?          

Adenoviruses are a group of viruses that cause respiratory (breathing) illnesses, such as a common cold, conjunctivitis (an infection in the eye), croup, bronchitis, bronchiolitis (inflammation of the lower airways) and pneumonia. Most adenovirus infections are mild.

Adenoviruses can also cause urinary or intestinal tract infections. The Division of Infectious Diseases at Boston Children's Hospital provides consultative care for children and adolescents with all types of infections.

Infections can occur at any age, and most children have had one form of the infection by age 10. Treatment involves staying hydrated and may require medication.

What are the different types of adenoviruses?  

In addition to the common cold, bronchitis and infections in the intestinal tract, an adenovirus can include:

The best way to avoid getting an adenovirus is by frequently washing your hands and your child's hands. If your child is in the hospital, health care workers will wear special apparel, such as gowns and gloves, when they enter your child's room to avoid spreading any infections.