Insight: COVID produced more symptoms, complications than seasonal influenza in adolescences

NEW YORK: Covid-19 produced more complications and symptoms than seasonal influenza in children, while death was rare among them, revealed a large new study. Early in the pandemic, opinions around the impact of Covid-19 on children and adolescents ranged from it being no more than the common flu to fear of its potential impact on lesser-developed immune systems.

Know more, researchers from IDIAP Jordi Gol in Barcelona compared the real-world observational data of more than 242,000 children and adolescents diagnosed with Covid-19, including nearly 10,000 hospitalised youths, to more than 2,000,000 diagnosed with influenza across five countries (France, Germany, South Korea, Spain, and the US) to provide a clearer picture of Covid's impact.

The most common 30-day complications for hospitalised youths with Covid-19 were hypoxemia and pneumonia, both of which occurred at a higher rate than hospitalised influenza pediatric patients. Pediatric patients with Covid-19 also showed higher rates of symptoms such as laboured breathing, loss of smell and gastrointestinal symptoms than those with influenza.

The study, published online in the journal Pediatrics, showed that asthma and obesity were the most common comorbidities. There was also a higher prevalence of rare conditions, including congenital malformations, neuro-developmental disorders, and heart disease, among those hospitalised with Covid-19.

 

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