COVID-19 2nd wave: Cases of acute virus in children increase manifold in J-K

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As Jammu and Kashmir faces second wave of Coronavirus, children have been showing mild to moderate symptoms of Covid-19.

The fresh surge of Coronavirus cases have witnessed more pediatric cases among ages of more than 10 years and also between 1 to 8 year.

As per the official document in possession of the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), the cases of acute Covid-19 have increase manifold in Jammu and Kashmir.

“It is believed that COVID-19 is relatively less common in children and serious COVID-19 disease is a rare occurrence. However, the number of cases in children has been steadily increasing and so are the children with the severe COVID-19 disease being admitted to ICU,” reads the document.

The document reads that a significant proportion of children are asymptomatic or may have non-specific symptoms making a diagnosis of infection challenging. Children with several comorbidities like genetic, neurologic, and metabolic diseases has an increased risk of severe disease.

“Children with SARS-CoV-2 infection are at risk of developing Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome of Children (MIS-C), a syndrome akin to Kawasaki disease and toxic shock syndrome,” it said.

The document said COVID-19 among children constituted 7.3 per cent (73/1000 cases) of cases admitted to one COVID-19 centre in Kashmir province in 2020.

“In another tertiary care centre, of the 81 children with COVID-19 seen in 2020, 19 had acute COVID-19 disease with no mortality and rest had MIS-C,” it adds.

“The same tertiary centre has already registered 60 patients with COVID-19 (57 acute COVID-19 and 3 with MIS-C) during the second wave in 2021. Three children with acute COVID-19 disease died with severe pneumonic illness,” the document reads.

The document said that it is suspected that the number of cases with MIS-C will show a considerable the rise in the coming weeks as the syndrome follows COVID-19 infection by several weeks.

Pertinently, the Covid Advisory Committee members in their recent report have also said that the occurrence of COVID-19 related severe lung disease and deaths in children is a direct reflection of the introduction of variants of concern in the community, which have a propensity to cause severe disease.

The document also reveals that the percentage of pregnant ladies in the first wave was just one per cent but in the second wave it has reached five per cent.

“Pregnant mothers are a special subgroup while considering infection with SARS-CoV-2 due to lowered immunity status, a propensity to infection of the maternal-fetal interface which could result in obstetrical events and vertical transmission to the fetus,” it said.

The document said, obstetricians in J&K are experiencing challenging times with a steep rise in the number of cases with a significant increase in the COVID positivity among pregnant women.

Collected data from one tertiary care hospital show that healthy pregnant women had a positivity rate of one per cent last year till March this year when it became two per cent. Currently, it stands at nearly 5 per cent, the report said.

“Seeing the current increasing trend of positivity in apparently healthy pregnant ladies it is very likely that in the next 3 to 6 months the obstetrical services may get over-whelmed,” the report adds—(KNO)

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