SLC Public Health: Childhood inflammatory disease related to COVID-19

CANTON, NY — Children have been significantly less affected by COVID-19. One percent of New Yorkers who have been hospitalized were under 20 years old.

Additionally, only 7% of the positive case in St. Lawrence County have been in children under 20 years old. However, the State Department of Health is investigating 124 reported cases and 3 deaths in New York of children, predominantly school-aged, possibly due to COVID-19.

Though most children who get COVID-19 experience only mild symptoms, this inflammatory syndrome has features which overlap with Kawasaki disease and toxic shock syndrome and may occur days to weeks after acute COVID-19 illness.

Parents should seek immediate care if a child has these symptoms:
 Prolonged fever (more than five days),
 Difficulty feeding (infants) or too sick to drink fluids,
 Severe abdominal pain, diarrhea, or vomiting,
 Change in skin color: becoming pale, patchy and/or blue,
 Trouble breathing or is breathing very quickly,
 Racing heart or chest pain,
 Decreased amount of frequency in urine, and
 Fatigue, irritability, or confusion

Of the children displaying these symptoms in New York State, 89% tested positive for COVID-19 either by a diagnostic test, an antibody test, or both. Early recognition by pediatricians and referral to a specialist including to critical care is essential.

If you have questions regarding this syndrome, please contact your pediatrician.