Post-Covid complications: MIS-C cases reported among children in Noida and Ghaziabad
Noida/Ghaziabad: Amid a decline in Covid-19 cases in Gautam Budh Nagar and Ghaziabad, post-Covid complications are coming to the fore. Nearly 70 cases of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) have been reported at various hospitals in both the districts in the past three weeks.
Experts said that all the MIS-C patients, who are usually in the age group of six months to 15 years, have had a history of Covid-19 infection in their families. The MIS-C is a condition where different body parts can become inflamed, including heart, lungs, kidneys, brain, skin, eyes, or gastrointestinal organs, the experts said, adding that most common symptoms are respiratory and abdominal issues.
Dr Rakesh Gupta, director of the Government Institute of Medical Sciences (GIMS), said that two cases of MIS-C have been reported at the hospital so far. “Two children aged six and seven years were admitted at GIMS with a moderate case of MIS-C last week. Both were discharged after a week of treatment. They both had a history of Covid-19 infection and had been positive a month back,” he said.
At Fortis Hosital Noida, there have been 15 mild to moderate cases of MIS-C in the age group of six months to 13 years in the past three weeks. Dr Ashutosh Sinha, head of department of paediatrics at the hospital, said that an antibody test is carried out to confirm Covid history in such children.
“It is not necessary that the child got Covid and then developed MIS-C. In majority of the cases, children were asymptomatic of Covid and have tested negative in RT-PCR test as well. However, since their parents or someone in family had the infection, the children developed antibodies against Covid and tested positive for the same in IgG antibody test,” Sinha said.
At Felix Hospital in Noida, two such cases have been reported in the past two weeks where one child was two years old and another seven years old. “Parents need to be very alert and suspicious of early signs of this disease among their children, especially if they have a history of Covid infection in their house. If it is not diagnosed at the earliest, it can prove dangerous as well,” said Dr Rashmi Gupta, child and neonatology specialist at the hospital.
Gupta said that doctors can use medicines such as intravenous immunoglobulin, steroids and other anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce the inflammation in such patients.
If the cases are identified early on, doctors are able to discharge the patients within four to six days, said Dr Ramalingam Kalyan, director and HoD (paediatrics), Max Hospital’s Vaishali and Noida branches.
“We are getting at least one case a day for the past three days. About 25-30% of such cases are being managed in the out-patient department. The mild stage of MIS-C is called ‘febrile inflammatory state’, in moderate state, the syndrome presents features of Kawasaki disease and at the highest level, toxic shock syndrome is reported,” said Dr Kalyan.
He also said that it is important to vaccinate the parents in order to avoid such complications in kids. “MIS-C is reported 4-6 weeks after the onset of Covid symptoms in the parents. Hence, the after effects of a possible third wave among adults will be borne by children since they may not get infected directly, but may develop post-covid complications. Therefore, it is vital that apart from following all Covid protocols, parents are vaccinated,” said Dr Kalyan.
At Yashoda Hospital, Nehru Nagar in Ghaziabad, there have been 19 cases of MIS-C, with the youngest one being a five-day-old baby. “The mother of the baby had contracted Covid-19 in her seventh month. When the child was born, it started vomiting and had fever. After an antibody test, the baby was diagnosed with MIS-C,” said Dr Sachin Dubey, primary paediatrician at the hospital.
At the Yashoda Hospital in Kaushambi too, about 20 cases of MIS-C were reported in the past two weeks. “70% of the cases reported at the hospital had inflammation of cardiac region that resulted in coronary abnormalities. Other cases were of subacute intestinal obstruction where the child had abdominal problems like diarrhoea, vomiting or loss of appetite,” said Dr Vidya Ghosh, head of paediatric intensive care unit at the hospital.
Dr Sumit Gupta, paediatrician at Columbia Asia Hospital, Ghaziabad, said that in the past two weeks, seven cases between 2 years and 13 years of age have been reported at the hospital. “Paediatricians in Ghaziabad are seeing a rise in cases of MIS-C in the last one month. The common symptoms include cold, fever, gastroenteritic issues like vomiting, diarrhoea, pain in the abdomen, or rashes. Younger children below six years of age are having more abdominal symptoms while in older ones fever is the main symptom,” he said.
When asked, GB Nagar chief medical officer Dr Deepak Ohri said that the district health department is not keeping a record of MIS-C cases. “Most of such patients reported in the district have recovered. Moreover, a very small number of MIS-C cases have been reported in the district so far,” he said.
Ghaziabad CMO Dr NK Gupta couldn’t be reached for a comment despite repeated attempts.