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Children Hospitalized for COVID-19 Health Issues

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Children hospitalized for COVID-19 can have lingering signs months later. Alexandra Pavlova/Getty Images
  • Researchers say 27 % of kids hospitalized for COVID-19 within the early levels of the pandemic had well being points months after being handled.
  • They stated the most typical illnesses had been exercise impairment and protracted signs.
  • Experts say dad and mom may help their youngsters by decreasing their threat of contracting COVID-19 by getting their children vaccinated and observing security protocols similar to mask-wearing and bodily distancing.

More than 1 / 4 of kids hospitalized with COVID-19 within the early levels of the pandemic had well being issues two to 4 months later.

Research printed as we speak within the journal Pediatrics reviews that 27 % of kids hospitalized with COVID-19 had both exercise impairment, persistent signs, or each situations two to 4 months after being handled for the illness.

“Almost three quarters were back to baseline, which is reassuring. But, unfortunately, more than one in four were not,” Dr. Adrienne Randolph, lead investigator of the examine and a senior affiliate in essential care medication at Boston Children’s Hospital, stated in a press launch.

“Although this is much better than many reports in hospitalized older adults, it is still very worrisome. The risks of severe illness and lingering complications are higher than the risk of complications from the vaccine, which are very rare,” she added.

The analysis was carried out between May 2020 and May 2021, earlier than vaccines had been out there for youngsters.

The commonest lingering signs had been fatigue or weak spot, shortness of breath, cough, headache, muscle and physique aches, and fever.

Dr. Dean Blumberg, chief of Pediatric Infectious Diseases on the University of California Davis Children’s Hospital says the examine is an efficient reminder that whereas the charges of hospitalization and ICU admission could also be decrease in youngsters than in adults, COVID-19 can nonetheless have a big long-term influence on them.

“They still are significantly affected by this. This can change their lifestyles. It can change the ability for them to participate in normal childhood activities. I think it’s a wake-up call for some parents at least about how important it is to protect their children against COVID to make sure that they are vaccinated and that they do avoid situations that are high risk for infection,” Blumberg advised Healthline.

The youngsters and adolescents within the examine additionally reported exercise impairment after two to 4 months.

This included not having the ability to stroll or train as a lot as they beforehand may, sleeping greater than ordinary, feeling distracted or unfocused, and having difficulties finishing schoolwork.

It’s one thing that Dr. Jaime Friedman, a pediatrician in San Diego, has seen in her sufferers.

“I have seen children with decreased endurance and trouble returning to sports following COVID. Thankfully, in the children I have seen this was temporary,” she advised Healthline.

“It’s very worrying because so many believe COVID doesn’t affect children. We know that’s not the case. With schools starting I’m worried about increased infections. It’s not ‘just a cold’ for everyone,” Friedman added.

Data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention exhibits that greater than 1 million individuals within the United States have died as a consequence of COVID-19.

Of these, just one,201 had been youngsters and adolescents.

However, consultants say COVID-19 nonetheless must be taken critically in youngsters because the long-term influence of lingering signs or impairment might be vital.

“If long COVID results in impairment in learning then that can affect a child’s future. It can affect their future careers, their financial success, it can affect them in so many ways,” Blumberg stated.

“There is increasing evidence that infection with COVID can result in the development of more chronic diseases such as diabetes, and so it can affect their physical health as well,” he added. “There’s a lot of different effects that can happen in children and the real tragedy of it is there’s no good solutions. There’s been very few studies of what to do with patients with long COVID and to develop any kind of effective therapies.”

While the examine examined youngsters who had been admitted to the hospital, consultants say even youngsters who aren’t hospitalized can nonetheless expertise well being issues following a COVID-19 an infection.

“Some children also have persistent symptoms or activity impairment after COVID-19 even if they did not require hospitalization,” Dr. Julianne Burns, a pediatric infectious ailments doctor at Stanford Medicine Children’s Health in California, advised Healthline.

“Pediatricians have seen many kids whose lives are affected after a COVID-19 illness. Persistent symptoms, especially fatigue, may prevent older kids from attending school and participating in sports and other activities they previously enjoyed. Even younger children may experience symptoms that affect their daily life, like needing to nap more often,” she added.

The consultants who spoke with Healthline say the perfect factor dad and mom can do to guard their youngsters is to try to keep away from COVID-19 within the first place by taking smart precautions.

“Parents can ensure that their children are up to date on COVID-19 vaccination (including boosters, if eligible) which has been shown to reduce the risk of severe illness. This is important even if children have already had COVID-19,” Burns stated.

“Parents can also take sensible protections to try to reduce the risk of getting COVID-19, such as wearing a mask in crowded settings, and especially indoors,” she added.

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