Coronavirus symptoms may appear less often in infected children

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Children with COVID-19 are less likely to have severe symptoms and require hospitalization than adults, according to new study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention which is among the first to examine how coronavirus affects the very young in the United States -United.

The report, released Monday, examines 149,760 cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. Less than 2% of these cases – 2,572 – involved children. To date, three children have died from COVID-19 in the country. The CDC analyzed the cases of the 50 states, Washington, D.C., and four American territories between February 12 and April 2.

“This is certainly the first step in understanding what COVID-19 disease looks like in children,” said CDC epidemiologist Dr. Tamara Pilishvili and one of the report’s authors. “In terms of our results, the disease in children tends to be milder than that seen in adults. This is consistent with previous reports in China and Italy summarizing COVID diseases. “

Studies in China since the emergence of the coronavirus in December show that the virus has been less severe in children. But serious illnesses can still occur, leading to hospitalization and intensive care – something that has also been seen in the United States, said Pilishvili.

In the United States, more than two-thirds of adults studied reported fever, cough, or shortness of breath as symptoms of COVID-19, compared to just over half of children.

The data shows that 213 children reported fever, cough or shortness of breath, compared to 10,167 adults. Of the overall cases involving children with known symptoms, 56% reported fever, 54% cough and 13% shortness of breath.

In contrast, among adults, 71% reported fevers, 80% had a cough and 43% had shortness of breath. The adults in the study were 18 to 64 years of age.

“These data support previous findings that children with COVID-19 may not have reported fever or cough as often as adults,” said the report. “While most cases of COVID-19 in children are not serious, serious COVID-19 disease leading to hospitalization still occurs in this age group. “

Some local experts have criticized the CDC study as too small to show how widespread the virus is in children, especially those who have no symptoms but can be infected.

“This confirms a lot of what many of us think and follows patterns that we are already seeing at the local level,” said Yvonne Maldonado, a pediatric infectious disease specialist at Stanford University. “We don’t really know, yet, if there are a number of symptomless children who could be infected. “



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