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CDC to warn doctors about mysterious illness in children linked to coronavirus

Wednesday, May 13, 2020 • Tamil Comments

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is preparing to alert doctors to be on the lookout for the mysterious inflammatory syndrome in children that could potentially be related to the novel coronavirus.

The illness was first reported by New York officials and several other states began reporting cases of it over the past week. According to the New York City Health Department, the majority of the cases are in children between the ages of 5 and 9 (29%) and between 10 and 14 (28%) years old. The children, who have had symptoms of fever, rash, abdominal pain, vomiting, or diarrhoea, were admitted to paediatric intensive care units (PICUs) and required cardiac/respiratory support. Some of the patients required mechanical ventilation while over half of them required blood pressure support. The mysterious illness has been dubbed "pediatric multi-system inflammatory syndrome potentially associated with Covid-19" by some doctors. A proper definition of the syndrome is expected to be released by tomorrow, according to a CDC spokesperson. 

Officials have requested doctors to report cases to state and local health departments so it will help the CDC better understand the syndrome. Three children, a 5-year-old boy, 7-year-old boy and 18-year-old girl, succumbed to the illness in last week, according to the governor of the state.

Two children in Kentucky have been identified with the illness as well, among several others cases. "One case is a 10-year-old, who is critically ill in the intensive care unit and the second patient is a 16-year-old, who is doing well and is in a regular medical bed," Kentucky's Health Commissioner Dr. Steven Stack announced. Mentioning that the children have been showing signs of recovery as some of their medications have been reduced, Stack further added, "The children who get sick with this can have cardiovascular collapse and require supportive measures to maintain their blood pressure, or respiratory collapse requiring breathing support with a mechanical ventilator."

Additionally, a consensus statement defining the condition was reportedly released by an informal panel at the Boston Children's Hospital. "In some cases, children present with shock and some have features of Kawasaki disease, whereas others may present with signs of cytokine storm. In some geographic areas, there has been an uptick in Kawasaki disease cases in children who don't have shock," a rheumatologist at the hospital stated, according to a report by an International news agency. "To date, most children affected have done well. Treatments have included anticoagulation, IV immunoglobulin, IL-1 or IL-6 blockade, and corticosteroids. Some children have only needed supportive care," the statement from the hospital included.

The United States' leading infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, mentioned in a statement regarding the syndrome that even though children are less likely than older adults with underlying health issues to have severe reactions to coronavirus, they are not immune to serious complications.

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