​Croup​


A condition where the upper airways (which includes the voice box and windpipe) are swollen is known as croup. This leads to a very hoarse and barking sound, usually when your child cries. Croup is caused by viruses and hence makes Viral Croup the most common type of croup in children. It is much more severe than normal croup and occurs in children from three months to six months of age. It is not a very serious disease and can be treated easily.

Your child will usually contract this disease by breathing infected droplets in the air. The virus can also survive on toys and floor. Once your child plays with infested toys, crawls on the floor and then touches his or her eyes, mouth and nose, the virus can be easily transferred and result in the croup.​​

  • Croup begins with a typical cold

  • As it worsens, it takes a ‘barking sound’ when the child coughs and cries

  • It causes serious agitation in the child as your child will be mostly restless

  • The cough gets worse during the night

  • Hoarse voice 

  • Your child’s breathing will turn noisy and hoarse

Symptoms of croup will usually last from 3 to 5 days.

Consult our team of internationally trained medical specialists working with the Children's Hospital Service Line at The Aga Khan University Hospital if you witness any of the above symptoms in your child.

Your time with your doctor maybe limited, so make sure to prepare for your visit beforehand. Here are some tips to help get you started.

Ideally a full body check-up will be conducted as the first step. Croup can also be signified over the phone because of the ‘barking’ sound it produces, which is a distinguishing factor. Our doctors will also put an instrument known as pulse oximeter on your child’s finger to check if the child’s blood is well oxygenated.

A child’s coughing can be very frightening; however, you need to stay calm as with proper treatment, croup can be cured.

  • Be sure to be calm and steady when your child undergoes a coughing spell. 

  • Try to soothe your child and stop him from crying by distracting him as the continuous crying and coughing can swell his windpipe.

  • Generate hot steam in the room and make your child stand there for some time. Do not put your child in hot water. Rather put the hot water tap on and allow the washroom to fill in with steam. 

  • Avoid passive smoke around your child at all costs.

  • If the cough spell starts during the night, sleep with your child overnight and calm him or her down when they are agitated.

  • Keep your child hydrated at all times. If you child doesn’t want to drink water, opt for flavoured water or icicles. 

  • If at any time you feel your child is having trouble breathing, bring him to the 24/7 Emergency and Acute Care Service Line at The Aga Khan University Hospital immediately.​

The Aga Khan University Hospital offers various support services to help with managing or recovering from the disease or condition. These include but are not limited to nutrition, physiotherapy, rehabilitation, specialized clinics and some patient support groups. Your doctor or nurse will advise you accordingly.

The Aga Khan University Hospital offers financial assistance to those who are in need and fulfil the eligibility criteria. For further information, you can contact the Patient Welfare Department. You can find the contact number of the Patient Welfare Department in the 'Important Numbers' section on the website homepage.

The financial counselling staff is available during office hours, at the main PBSD (Patient Business Services Department), to answer your financial queries on treatments' costs and authorize admissions on partial deposit as per hospital policies allow. The financial counsellor in the emergency room is open 24/7. You can find the contact number of the Patient Business Services in the 'Important Numbers' section on the website homepage.

Your doctor and or nurse will give you specific instructions about the prescribed medication. Please ensure that you take or use the prescribed medicine as advised. It can be dangerous to your health if you self-prescribe. Please inform the doctor or nurse beforehand if you have experienced any adverse reactions to any medications in the past. If you experience any symptoms of drug poisoning, overdose or severe reaction please contact the Pharmacy Service at The Aga Khan University Hospital immediately. You can find the contact number of the Pharmacy Services in the 'Important Numbers' section on the website homepage.




The information provided on our website is for educational purposes and not intended to be a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. You should always seek the advice of your doctor or other healthcare professional provider.