Nasal swabs are an important part of the WIND Study.
With your help, we hope to use the information from these swabs to identify the viruses associated with future asthma.
There are three different types of nasal swab that we ask you to collect. We test each of these swabs for viruses and the results of that testing will allow us to form a complete picture of your child’s respiratory health. We hope that this in turn will help us to further understand the link between severe bronchiolitis, future wheezing, and asthma.
Please click below to learn more about each of the different types of swabs and when we’d like you to take them–and remember to keep your swab kits refrigerated!
An important part of the study is determining whether your child is still carrying the virus that led to the hospitalization during which he or she was enrolled. After your child is enrolled in the WIND Study, you will be given a “Clearance Swab Kit” to take home with you. You should take this swab three weeks (21 days) after the date your child was admitted to the hospital and send it to us. If the virus is no longer in your child’s respiratory system, we say that the virus has been “cleared”.
Learning when the virus is cleared helps us understand the roles different viruses play in causing illness. We also need to know how the virus is affecting your child shortly after the hospital visit to be able to compare it to other breathing problems that your child may have over the course of the study.
One of the aims of the WIND Study is to better understand what viruses are responsible for respiratory infections in children. This is an important part of studying the link between individual infections like bronchiolitis and chronic respiratory illnesses like asthma.
We therefore ask that you take a “Healthcare Swab” if your child ever has a breathing problem that prompts you to visit a healthcare provider (such as a primary care physician, an urgent care clinic, or the hospital). The sooner the swab is taken, the better chance we have of catching any viruses that may have been responsible for the breathing problem. You should take the swab as soon as you make the decision to visit a healthcare provider or within 24 hours of receiving medical care.
To learn more about what exactly we mean by a “breathing problem,” please visit our resources page. However, the most important requirement for taking a Healthcare Swab is that you have taken your child to a healthcare provider for any concerns whatsoever about his or her breathing. So if you’re ever uncertain about whether or not to take a Healthcare Swab, or whether your child is having a breathing problem, we would prefer that you take the swab just in case and send it in.
You will initially receive one of these Healthcare Swabs to take home with you, and we will send you a replacement swab in the mail any time you use one and mail it to us. We will also send you a second Healthcare Swab when you mail us your Clearance Swab– this way you will always have two Healthcare Swabs on hand. We will also call you a week after the Healthcare Swab is taken to see how your child is doing after his or her healthcare visit.
We will mail you two swabs to take when your child is healthy; we ask you to take one swab during the summer after your child is hospitalized, when hopefully he or she is without breathing problems, and then once again the following year during a specific season.
Each of the kits contains the actual swab (with detailed instructions on how to take the swab) as well as an accompanying form that we ask you to fill out. As always, please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.
If your child is over 3 years old: You no longer need to do nasal swabs for the WIND Study! If you have any unused nasal swab kits, please mail them back to us. The postage is prepaid so all you have to do is drop the nasal swab in your mailbox.