Persistent Covid symptoms in children do not last beyond 12 weeks in children and adolescents, unlike in adults. A job from the
Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (Australia) which nonetheless points out that more studies are needed to investigate the risk and impact of persistent Covid on young people to help guide policy decisions around vaccination, at least in Australia.
The review, published in the journal
Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal, found that existing studies on prolonged Covid in children and adolescents have important limitations and some do not show a difference in symptoms between those who have been infected by SARS-CoV-2 and those who have not.
The report also shows some hopeful data: after 10 months in circulation, the Delta strain had not caused more serious illness in children than previous variants and most cases remained asymptomatic or mild.
However, he found that children and adolescents with diseases such as obesity, chronic kidney disease, cardiovascular disease, and immune disorders, they have a risk 25 times higher than severe Covid-19.
The study author, Nigel Curtis, notes that while children with SARS-CoV-2 infection were generally asymptomatic or had mild illness with low hospitalization rates, the risk and characteristics of prolonged Covid are not well understood.
In addition, experts say that it is difficult to distinguish between persistent symptoms of the Covid-19 of those attributable to the indirect effects of the pandemic, such as the closure of schools, not seeing friends or not being able to do sports.
The review analyzed 14 international studies that involved 19,426 children and adolescents who reported persistent symptoms after Covid-19.
The most common symptoms reported four to 12 weeks after acute infection were headache, fatigue, sleep disturbances, concentration difficulties, and abdominal pain.
Professor Curtis says it is reassuring that there is little evidence that symptoms persist for more than 12 weeks, suggesting that the extended covid it may be less of a concern in children and adolescents than in adults.
The report also notes that although the multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) had caused child deaths abroad, these occurred mainly in the early stages of the pandemic and that the earlier diagnosis, the most appropriate treatments had improved the results. In 2021, almost all children with MIS-C made a full recovery.