Worrying surge in childhood

Worrying surge in childhood disease linked to COVID-19

At least five children -- three in New York, and one each in France and Britain -- have died from the syndrome, and at least two other deaths are suspect.
Up to now, COVID-19 -- with 4.5 million confirmed cases worldwide, and more than 300,000 deaths -- has largely spared small children and teens, though many are thought to have been infected without showing symptoms.
Europe has seen some 230 suspected cases of so-called paediatric inflammatory multisystem syndrome (PIMS) in children up to 14 years old, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) said Friday.Doctors in Bergamo, northern Italy reported a 30-fold increase in the incidence of severe inflammatory disorders among young children, with ten cases from mid-February to mid-April as compared to 19 during the previous five years, according to a study this week in The Lancet.
"Initial reports hypothesise that this syndrome may be related to COVID-19," World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a virtual briefing Friday, calling on clinicians worldwide to help "better understand this syndrome in children."

France's state-run health watchdog described the likelihood of such a link as "very probable."

Like Kawasaki disease, a rare condition that occurs in very young children, the new disorder can cause persistent fever, searing abdominal pain, rashes and a swollen tongue.
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