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A new, as-of-yet-rare-but-deadly syndrome has begun to affect children in the United States, according to Dr Sanjay Gupta, CNN’s longtime medical correspondent.
It’s not entirely clear whether this new ailment is tied to COVID-19, but it certainly could upend common thinking that the novel coronavirus doesn’t much affect children.
“One of the big things we learned this week, Anderson, is that this virus may have more of an impact on children than we realize. There is now a new disease in the world, just alerted this evening, that has been named multi system inflammatory syndrome in children,” Dr Gupta said in an on-air segment with host Anderson Cooper. “Just like its name suggests it’s a name that can lead to severe inflammation in the body and even the heart in which case it can be deadly. We don’t know for sure still, Anderson, it this is related to COVID or we’re being hyper vigilant and everyone is paying closer attention to everything as often happens during an outbreak.
“We know thankfully for now it is rare. That’s important to note. Fewer than 200 children in the country have been unofficially diagnosed now. We still are getting the official diagnosis,” Dr Gupta added. “We don’t know why children in Asia didn’t appear to get this. It could be genetic, the environment, something else entirely.”
Asked what parents should be on the lookout for, Dr Gupta replied, “Well, it can be challenging. There’s a few things. With this particular inflammatory disease, oftentimes the skin, you get these rashes that are present on the skin. Sometimes kids will have what’s called a strawberry tongue. The tongue actually looks like a strawberry. They’ll have persistent fever.
“But a lot of this diagnosis is going to be made at the hospital. This lookout going out from the CDC is in many ways for hospitals to say, ‘Look, even if a child is not actively diagnosed with COVID, maybe they have in the past, think about this.’ Think about the fact this could be this inflammatory syndrome and possibly treated early. Decrease the inflammation in the body to try and give the child a better chance at recovery,” Dr Gupta added.
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