Can we distinguish respiratory viral infections based on clinical features? A prospective pediatric cohort compared to systematic literature review
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Studies have shown that the predictive value of “clinical diagnoses” of influenza and other respiratory viral infections is low, especially in children. In routine care, pediatricians often resort to clinical diagnoses, even in the absence of robust evidence‐based criteria. We used a dual approach to identify clinical characteristics that may help to differentiate infections with common pathogens including influenza, respiratory syncytial virus, adenovirus, metapneumovirus, rhinovirus, bocavirus‐1, coronaviruses, or parainfluenza virus: (a) systematic review and meta‐analysis of 47 clinical studies published in Medline (June 1996 to March 2017, PROSPERO registration number: CRD42017059557) comprising 49 858 individuals and (b) data‐driven analysis of an inception cohort of 6073 children with ILI (aged 0‐18 years, 56% male, December 2009 to March 2015) examined at the point of care in addition to blinded PCR testing. We determined pooled odds ratios for the literature analysis and compared these to odds ratios based on the clinical cohort dataset.