Health protection – collection

Human parainfluenza viruses: guidance and data

The symptoms, diagnosis, management and epidemiology of human parainfluenza viruses (HPIVs).

Human parainfluenza viruses (HPIVs) are one of the most important causes of upper and lower respiratory tract diseases, especially in young children.

HPIVs can cause repeated infections throughout life, mostly causing mild disease, such as the common cold and croup, with symptoms including malaise, fever, cough, and such sore throats.

HPIV infections may also cause more severe respiratory diseases especially among the elderly and among patients who are immunocompromised.

Diagnosis and management

  1. Human parainfluenza viruses: clinical and public health management

    • Detailed guide
  2. Respiratory virus unit (RVU): diagnostic services

    • Detailed guide


Laboratory surveillance data (by specimen week) for England and Wales between 1 January 1975 and 26 August 2008 is available from our archive website.

  1. Human parainfluenza viruses: epidemiological data

    • Research and analysis