Children are becoming seriously ill with a frightening, rare disease that has proven to be fatal. Although most children are spared serious effects of the coronavirus, new evidence appears the virus is causing "pediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome," a new disorder that involves inflammation of the eyes, skin, blood vessels, and heart.
According to The New York Times, three children have died from it, along with a 14-year-old boy in England. Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York said May 8 there have been 93 reported cases in the state and a handful of other cases have been reported across the country.
At first, doctors thought the sick children were suffering from Kawasaki's disease, a rare childhood illness. But Dr. Steven Kernie, chief of critical pediatric care medicine at Columbia University and New York-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital told the Times the new syndrome involves inflammation of the heart's blood vessels and arteries, while Kawasaki disease potentially causes coronary aneurysms. Some children presented with symptoms of toxic shock which is also rare in Kawasaki disease.
Kernie said the disease affects children and not adults potentially because of their immature immune systems.
According to experts at Boston Children's Hospital, parents should watch for symptoms of persistent fever, inflammation, and poor organ function. Because children have gotten sick rapidly, they should be brought to hospitals with pediatric and cardiac intensive care units. It has been noted some kids tested positive for COVID-19, while others did not, leading doctors to believe it might be a post-infection syndrome. The children who tested negative might have had COVID-19 weeks before the inflammatory symptoms appeared.
Treatments for the novel, and yet unnamed syndrome, include steroids, immunoglobulin inns, high-dose aspirin and high dose antibiotics, according to the Times. Kernie said there are no clues as to why come kids are affected and others are not.
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