AUGUSTA,Ga. (WJBF) – A recent discovery by doctors in Italy claims there is a link between COVID-19 and rare ‘Kawasaki-like’ inflammatory disease in children.
Dr. Jim Wilde of The Medical College of Georgia’s Pediatric Emergency Medicine and Infectious Disease tells us that within the last two months they have not seen an increase in children with COVID-19.
“COVID has left kids in Augusta alone. I’m aware of about seven kids total in two months that have come up positive for COVID. We’ve had to hospitalize three and they were home within a couple of days. No child in Augusta has died from COVID.”
Recently doctors in Italy linked a syndrome, now referred to as “Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children,” which resembles another childhood condition known as Kawasaki disease.
Can you describe this Kawasaki disease for those who might not be familiar with it?
“It affects large number of blood vessels around your body.”
Dr. Wilde says it is to early to tell if there is a definite link between COVID-19 and the inflammatory syndrome. Kawasaki disease is known to mainly affects children under the age of 5.
“Causes inflammation in small blood vessels, particularly in the arteries, the heart blood vessels and if you have a child with Kawasaki, there is a therapy for it. The vast majority of kids with Kawasaki do very very well. This is not a life threatening illness.”
While the new syndrome also involves inflammation, infectious disease experts say it is different from Kawasaki disease. Symptoms include persistent fever, rash, red eyes, inflammation and poor function in one or more organs.
“Whether COVID is causing a toxic shock-like or a Kawasaki-like problem is what is being investigated right now.”
You mention toxic shock syndrome, can you describe what happens with that?
“It’s an over reaction of your immune system to an invader, particularly staff or strep infection and when you have that over reaction you get inflammation all over your body.”
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