01/5Study finds link between COVID and occurrence of pediatric upper airways infection
A study has found a strong link between the occurrence of pediatric upper airways infection during the Omicron surge. Young children are especially vulnerable to upper airways infection given their small and relatively collapsible airways, says the study published in JAMA Pediatrics on April 15, 2022.readmore
02/5Omicron variant of coronavirus
The Omicron variant of the coronavirus led the third wave of COVID infection worldwide starting from around December 2021. The variant swept across the world and within no time replaced its aggressive ancestor Delta variant. The latest variant of coronavirus to be put under the WHO’s variant of concern group, Omicron, is the highly transmissible variant of the virus so far.
Explaining the less severity of the Omicron induced infection, the researchers say: “Omicron is known to cause lower severity disease than the Delta (B.1.617.2) variant. This may be because Omicron replicates less efficiently in lung parenchyma and more efficiently in the conducting airways.”
03/5What did the study find?
The study found that the pediatric upper airway infection rate increased during Omicron surge. More than one-fifth of children hospitalized with SARS-CoV-2 and upper airway infection developed severe disease, the study found.
The researchers have warned that children with severe upper airway infection are at risk of cardiac arrest from rapid-onset upper airway obstruction. They may require therapies typically provided in intensive care units, including frequent administration of nebulized racemic epinephrine, helium-oxygen mixtures, and intubation.
Read: Coronavirus or something else? What could your low grade fever mean
04/5Omicron in kids in India
An increase in cases of COVID are being seen in the country currently. Months after reopening of schools, Delhi reported a rise in COVID. As per reports, of the total number of COVID patients admitted in hospitals, which is 51, 27% or 14 of them are kids. 12 of these kids are in Kalawati Saran Children’s hospital and one each in Indraprastha Apollo and Madhukar Rainbow Children’s Hospital.
05/5What are the COVID symptoms in kids?
Health experts say the initial symptom of COVID in kids is vomiting which is followed by high grade fever and diarrhea.
In older kids, headaches are also seen.
Dr Anamika Dubey, senior consultant, pediatrics at Madhukar Rainbow Children’s Hospital told TOI that lung involvement in children in case of COVID is extremely rare. Data obtained from the US CDC and the research study says that risk of a kid getting hospitalized due to COVID is 1 in 14,085 and the risk of developing severe symptoms is 1 in 10 million.
Doctors have asked parents to keep an eye on warning signs like difficulty in breathing like shallow breathing or fast breathing, discoloration of lips or face, chest pain and discomfort, lack of interaction and moderate illness.