Cases of children with a rare inflammatory syndrome peak in Italy and France

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(Reuters) – Doctors in northern Italy, one of the regions hardest hit by the new coronavirus, and in France have reported spikes in cases of a rare inflammatory syndrome in young children that looks like the one reported in the United States, Britain and Spain, according to a report in The Lancet.

The condition, “Pediatric Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome Potentially Associated With COVID-19”, presents symptoms of toxic shock and Kawasaki disease, including fever, rash, swollen glands and, in severe cases, heart inflammation .

Case reports have raised concerns that COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, may pose a higher risk to children than previously thought. So far, it has wreaked havoc among the elderly and those with chronic health conditions.

New York said on Sunday that it is investigating 85 cases of children with the syndrome. So far, three of these children, who have also tested positive for COVID-19, have died, and two more deaths are being investigated, said Governor Andrew Cuomo.

In Bergamo, Italy, between February 18 and April 20, Papa Giovanni XXIII Hospital admitted 10 children with the syndrome, eight of whom tested positive for anti-coronavirus antibodies. In the past five years, doctors have seen a total of only 19 children with Kawasaki disease, according to a report released Wednesday by The Lancet.

Compared to children with Kawasaki disease in the past, those they saw during the pandemic were older and more seriously ill, according to the report, with 60% having heart complications and half with signs of the syndrome. toxic shock.

Scientists are still trying to determine if the syndrome is related to the new coronavirus because not all children with the virus have tested positive for the virus.

Some researchers have suggested that the coronavirus family may trigger Kawasaki disease.

“Symptoms in children are different from those in adults with COVID-19 in whom the disease is more of a respiratory condition,” said Dr. George Ofori-Amanfo, division chief of pediatric intensive care at Mount Sinai Kravis Children’s Hospital , New York.

Children with rare inflammatory syndrome often have severe abdominal pain and vomiting that progress to shock, Ofori-Amanfo told Reuters.

He said that none of the children he had seen recently with this syndrome had an underlying disease, but all of them had antibodies to the coronavirus.

Vishwadha Chander’s report; Editing by Nancy Lapid and Daniel Wallis

Our standards:Principles of the Thomson Reuters Trust.

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