The CDC Just Confirmed This Rare Syndrome Striking Kids is Linked to COVID-19
Since the first cases of COVID-19 were identified in December 2019 in Wuhan, China, it was clear that the virus impacted children to a much lesser degree than older people. Over the last few months, researchers have established that while children may be able to spread the virus similarly to adults and may even boast a higher viral load when infected, they are less prone to a serious infection than their elders and are much less likely to die. However, this doesn't mean that children are "immune" to it. Over the winter, health experts noticed that some children were displaying signs of a rare inflammatory illness similar to Kawasaki virus, and a new report courtesy of the CDC reveals that nearly 600 have been hospitalized with it.
They Were Hospitalized With MIS-C
According to the report, from mid-February to July 29, 570 children in 40 states were hospitalized with multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children, or MIS-C, a health condition that causes inflammation in the heart, lungs, kidneys, brain, skin, eyes, or gastrointestinal organs. Of the 565 who were tested for COVID, all received a positive result, and the majority—two thirds—did not have any pre-existing underlying medical conditions.
"Most cases of MIS-C have features of shock, with cardiac involvement, gastrointestinal symptoms, and significantly elevated markers of inflammation," the CDC explains.
The CDC admits the condition is difficult to diagnose, and they still aren't sure why COVID is causing it. "We do not yet know what causes MIS-C. However, many children with MIS-C had the virus that causes COVID-19, or had been around someone with COVID-19," they added.
The first cases were reported in the UK in late April, gaining publicity when 100 children were diagnosed in New York City the following month. Interestingly, the condition appears to impact Black and Hispanic children more than Caucasians. While half of children in the United States are white, 25% Hispanic, and 14% Black, only 13% of the children with it were white, with more than 40% Hispanic and 33% Black.
The Signs and Symptoms
The most common signs and symptoms reported during the illness course were abdominal pain (61.9%), vomiting (61.8%), skin rash (55.3%), diarrhea (53.2%), hypotension (49.5%), and conjunctival injection (48.4%). Additionally, the majority had gastrointestinal (90.9%), cardiovascular (86.5%), or dermatologic or mucocutaneous (70.9%) involvement.
A fair amount of patients also suffered severe complications, including cardiac dysfunction (40.6%), shock (35.4%), myocarditis (22.8%), coronary artery dilatation or aneurysm (18.6%), and acute kidney injury (18.4%).
As for yourself, if you're feeling like you may have COVID-19, call your medical professional immediately and don't miss this list of 98 Symptoms Coronavirus Patients Say They've Had.