COVID-linked syndrome in children is growing and cases are more severe

U.S. doctors are reporting an uptick in cases of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), a complication of COVID, with more patients becoming critically ill or dying. Typical symptoms include fever, rash, red eyes, or gastrointestinal issues weeks after a coronavirus infection.

U.S. doctors are reporting an uptick in cases of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), a complication of COVID, with more patients becoming critically ill or dying. Typical symptoms include fever, rash, red eyes, or gastrointestinal issues weeks after a coronavirus infection. In the worst instances, young people can develop heart dysfunction and other serious problems, often warranting mechanical ventilation. At Children's National Hospital in Washington, DC, the share of children with MIS-C requiring intensive care has jumped over the months from 50% to as many as 90%. Doctors emphasize that the condition is rare and most young people who developed it eventually have been discharged home in relatively healthy condition. The growing severity over time may simply be a byproduct of a surge in overall cases, and experts say there is no reason right now to suspect that emerging strains of COVID-19 are to blame. Even as physicians learn more about the syndrome and how to treat it, some sick children slip through the cracks because their symptoms present as stomach bugs or other common ailments.