Doctors Warn Of Rise In Children With Inflammatory Syndrome Related To Coronavirus

The inflammatory pediatric syndrome linked to COVID-19 called MIS-C is on the rise. KDKA's Dr. Maria Simbra has more on the slight increase in the region.

Video Transcript

- In most cases so far, COVID has spared children from the worst.

- But there is still a risk. Dr. Maria Simbra reports on the rise, locally, of multi-system inflammatory syndrome in children.

MARIA: The inflammatory pediatric syndrome linked to COVID-19, called MIS-C, is on the rise. Through a pediatric resident who works with him, Dr. Michael Petrosky is aware of a local increase at Children's Hospital.

PETROSKY: They've had a steady amount of cases. Um, two or three a day. So it's definitely out there.

MARIA: That's up from one or two in December.

PETROSKY: Most of the kids now that are getting it, they need more of the intensive care type stuff, so they're not-- they seem to be more sick.

MARIA: Symptoms can include fever, rash, red eyes, usually a couple of weeks after the initial illness.

PETROSKY: Fevers are usually persisting for three or four days. They are not wanting to eat or drink not wanting to get up and move. Sometimes there's this lingering inflammation. When it lingers too long, it can affect lots of different organ systems. Heart, lungs, kidneys you worry about.

MARIA: Because of the delayed symptoms, Dr. Petrosky says the surge in MIS-C reflects the recent spike in cases overall. Some pediatric ICUs are full of children with MIS-C for instance, in Washington, D.C. and other areas.

PETROSKY Middle of the country seems to be having a little bit more.

MARIA: With medicines and ventilators, most of these kids do recover.

PETROSKY: The thing we're still learning is what, what does this mean long term, since everything is new.

MARIA: Overall, the illness is still rare. Just over 2000 cases in the US, and 30 deaths.

PETROSKY: And we know the numbers are low, but if that one number is yours, that's a pretty high significant one.

MARIA: To avoid MIS-C minimize your exposure to coronavirus. Dr. Petrosky credits masking and social distancing for keeping the bump in Pittsburgh cases small. I'm Dr. Maria Simbra, KDKA News.