Nebraska sees first cases of rare coronavirus-linked inflammatory syndrome in kids

Nebraska health officials this week identified what are thought to be the state’s first cases of a rare inflammatory condition in children that experts think is likely linked to the novel coronavirus.

The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) in a statement on Monday announced the first and second confirmed cases of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C).

LOUISIANA CHILD'S POSSIBLE CORONAVIRUS-LINKED MIS-C DEATH THE FIRST IN STATE

One of the affected children is from Dawson County, while the other is from Douglas County. Both are currently hospitalized, officials said. However, they are expected to be discharged soon, the Omaha World-Herald reported.

The Dawson County patient was identified by the newspaper as Gabriel Faudoa, 9, who was airlifted to Children’s Hospital & Medical Center on May 21. Gabriel’s mother, Alejandra Faudoa, said her son became ill not long after her husband was found to be positive for COVID-19.

“We don't know exactly what causes this syndrome, but we do know that many children diagnosed with it had COVID-19 or had been around someone with COVID-19," said Dr. Gary Anthone, chief medical officer and director of public health for the state’s DHHS, in a statement. “The syndrome appears to be an uncommon manifestation potentially tied to COVID-19. It can be very serious, but most children diagnosed with the condition have gotten better with medical care."

MIS-C is an inflammatory condition that is similar to Kawasaki disease, which causes swelling in arteries throughout the body. However, the two conditions are not the same, and MIS-C has largely been reported in children who have been infected with or exposed to COVID-19.

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MIS-C typically causes inflammation in the heart, lungs, kidneys, brain, skin, eyes or gastrointestinal organs. MIS-C can also cause persistent fever, rashes, vomiting and diarrhea, among other symptoms such as a red tongue and eyes.

The news comes after a study found that MIS-C is indeed a new condition, with researchers in a paper published this week in the Journal of the American Medical Association identifying the main symptoms and clinical markers.