Fifteen children have been hospitalized in New York City with the deadly Kawasaki disease now linked to coronavirus.
Kawasaki is a rare inflammatory syndrome that has left children fighting for their lives in intensive care amid the pandemic.
The fifteen children were hospitalized in the city between April 17 and May 1, and five of them have required mechanical ventilation.
No fatalities have yet been reported.
Links between Covid-19 and Kawasaki disease have sparked concerns both in the US and abroad, and doctors are exploring the possibility that the virus could trigger the inflammatory illness in children.
The two deadly conditions have similar symptoms in children, such as a high fever, rash and irritability, leading to children being misdiagnosed with COVID-19 instead of the inflammatory syndrome.
If left untreated, the rare disease can have fatal consequences as it could inflame the blood vessels supplying blood to the heart.
The condition develops in three phases, including a rash and temperature in the first few weeks, diarrhea, vomiting and stomach pain in the second and feeling tired and a lack of energy in the third.
Children under the age of five are most at risk.
Dr. Demetre Daskalakis, deputy city health commissioner for disease control, said in the memo to health care providers:
‘If the above-described inflammatory syndrome is suspected, pediatricians should immediately refer patients to a specialist in pediatric infectious disease, rheumatology, and/or critical care, as indicated.
‘Early diagnosis and treatment of patients meeting full or partial criteria for Kawasaki disease is critical to preventing end-organ damage and other long-term complications.
Daily Mail UK