FAIRFAX, Va. — Health officials in Fairfax have confirmed that a child contracted COVID-19 and has developed Multi-System Inflammatory Syndrome, which is the first coronavirus case of its kind in Virginia.
The child was hospitalized on May 5, but has been discharged and is now recovering at home. No patient information will be released in order to protect privacy.
MIS-C, previously called Pediatric Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome, is a new health condition associated with COVID-19. This condition can cause issues with a child's heart and other organs.
Most children with this symptom have a fever lasting several days and may show symptoms of irritability or decreased activity, abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, rash, conjunctivitis, lack of appetite, red or cracked lips, red or bumpy tongue, or swollen hands or feet.
Cases in the country like this one were reported in New York City in early May.
Virginia Health Commissioner M. Norman Oliver, M.D., M.A., provided information and guidance on the syndrome to health care providers in Virginia in a May 15 Clinician Letter.
“I urge all health care providers in Virginia to immediately report any patient who meets these criteria to the local health department by the most rapid means,” said Dr. Oliver. “All Virginians should take steps to avoid exposure to COVID-19 by practicing social distancing, frequent hand washing and wearing cloth face coverings if appropriate.” Cloth face coverings are not recommended for children under 2 years old.
Parents should watch for persistent fever in their children and contact their pediatrician if a child appears especially ill.
The CDC issued a Health Advisory on May 14 about the syndrome, which may include symptoms of persistent fever, hypotension, multisystem organ involvement and elevated markers of inflammation. It is not currently known how common it may be for children to experience these symptoms.