In the United States, nearly 300 cases of a rare life-threatening syndrome in children and adolescents associated with the new coronavirus have been identified in the New England Journal of Medicine.
The American studies published Monday follow several reports of syndrome in COVID-19 patients in France, Italy, Spain and Great Britain.
Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), sharing of symptoms with toxic shock and Kawasaki disease, including fever, rashes, swollen glands and, in severe cases, heart inflammation.
A coherent picture emerges from the syndrome occurring two to four weeks after infection with the coronavirus, Michael Levin, professor of pediatrics and international children’s health at Imperial College London, said in an accompanying editorial.
The syndrome affects 2 in 100,000 young people, defined as under the age of 21, out of 322 in 100,000 in this group who receive COVID-19, he writes.
While studies have identified around 300 cases in the United States, Levin noted that there have been more than 1,000 cases reported worldwide and that a relatively high proportion has occurred among blacks, Hispanics or South Asians.
“There is concern that children who meet the current diagnostic criteria for MIS-C are the” tip of the iceberg “and that a bigger problem is hiding below the waterline,” Levin wrote.
The first study, led by Boston Children’s Hospital, found 186 cases of MIS-C in 26 US states, including 4 in 5 requiring intensive care and one in five requiring mechanical ventilation. Four patients died.
The second study, which observed patients in New York and was conducted by the state health department, found another 95 confirmed cases, 4 out of 5 to be admitted to the intensive care unit and two patients dying.
It is not known why MIS-C develops in some children and adolescents and not in others.
(This story has not been edited by GalacticGaming staff and is automatically generated from a syndicated feed.)