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Newborn in India successfully treated for Covid-linked inflammatory syndrome amid alarming surge in cases

Newborn in India successfully treated for Covid-linked inflammatory syndrome amid alarming surge in cases
A newborn baby in India has overcome a rare inflammatory condition that is being increasingly found in children who have recovered from the coronavirus. The government is ramping up efforts to treat such cases.

A seven-day-old suffering from multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) along with a rare skin condition called purpura fulminans was successfully treated in the city of Vijayawada, Pune Mirror reported.

PV Rama Rao, chief of children’s services at Andhra Hospitals, told the paper that the combination of the two conditions was “presumably the first reported case in the world.”

India has been seeing an upswing of post-Covid MIS-C in recent months. The intensive care chapter of the Indian Academy of Pediatrics (IAP) reported 177 new cases in Delhi and surrounding areas during the last week of May alone. The patients were between four and 18 years old. Spikes in MIS-C as a reaction to Covid-19 were reported in other parts of the country as well.

News18 India cited medical sources last week saying that a newborn in Ahmedabad whose mother had recovered from the coronavirus before delivery was diagnosed with MIS-C.

VK Paul, a member of the government advisory group NITI Aayog, told the Tribune newspaper that patients develop symptoms such as fever, rash, eye inflammation, diarrhea and the loss of breath in two to six weeks after being diagnosed with an asymptomatic case of Covid-19. “It is treatable, but can turn into a major condition,” he said.

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According to Indian media, the actual prevalence of MIS-C is hard to measure because the reporting of the disease is not mandated by law. The health ministry asked all regions last week to report the weekly data on new cases. The Tribune said on Sunday that the government was developing a new protocol on the treatment of children with Covid-19 and was planning to ramp up existing childcare facilities by three times.

The news comes as India is already battling an outbreak of another rare but often deadly disease called mucormycosis, also known as ‘black fungus’, with close to 12,000 cases reported as of late May.

A study published in the peer-reviewed Journal of Clinical Investigation last month found that during MIS-C the inflammation is caused by the trafficking of the coronavirus antigens into the bloodstream.

MIS-C was previously observed in the US, where 4,018 cases were recorded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as of June 2, 2021, and 36 patients have died.

According to the CDC, MIS-C causes different body parts to become inflamed, including the heart, lungs, kidneys, brain and gastrointestinal organs, and has been found in children who had recovered from the coronavirus or had been around someone with Covid-19.

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