Mystery inflammation syndrome connected to COVID-19 in children results in brain damage

| | July 17, 2020
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[Children with COVID-19] can suffer everything from headaches to muscle weakness, along with visible signs of damage to the brain.

The study, published in JAMA Neurology on [July 1], looks at the cases of children with the mystery condition, now commonly known as multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children, or MIS-C.

MIS-C is a rare but potentially life-threatening occurrence that arises during or soon after infection with the coronavirus that causes covid-19. Its symptoms can affect the whole body, including fever, skin rashes, breathing problems, and a sudden drop in blood pressure (shock) that can deprive organs of oxygen and lead to death. The syndrome is likely the result of a flawed immune response to the virus, rather than symptoms caused directly by the infection.

Related article:  Not so different after all: Reptile and human brains have a lot in common

They also cautioned that doctors should consider the possibility of covid-19 in children with neurological symptoms and damage to the splenium of the corpus callosum (the thickest part of the brain structure), even if they don’t have typical respiratory symptoms.

Most children who contract the coronavirus do not develop serious symptoms and are less likely to have the sort of flu-like symptoms seen in adults. MIS-C is considered to be rare and treatable through existing anti-inflammatory drugs, especially if caught early. But right now, we have no real sense of how often it happens, why some children develop it, or how to prevent it.

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