Hospitalization, multiple symptoms linked to long covid in children
Like adults, children who have tested positive for the coronavirus can develop long covid, with 10% of youths who were hospitalized with covid-19 experiencing symptoms.
Symptoms include fatigue, weakness, coughing, difficulty breathing and shortness of breath three months later, the Washington Post said in a report, citing a study published in JAMA Network Open.
Based on data from 1,884 children and youths who were treated for covid-19, the study found that long covid was less likely among those under 18 who did not require hospitalization but instead had been treated in an emergency room and discharged.
About 5% of those youths had post-covid conditions three months later.
The researchers also found that the more covid symptoms young people had initially, the more likely they were to develop long covid: Nearly 5% of those hospitalized with one to three covid-19 symptoms subsequently developed long covid, compared with nearly 23% of those who had seven or more covid-19 symptoms when hospitalized.
For adults, long covid often involves problems with the sense of smell or taste (or both), with roughly 50% of those with covid reporting problems, according to research published in the journal BMJ based on data from 18 studies involving 3,699 adults.
After six months, most adults had recovered the senses, but about 5% (12 million to 15 million people worldwide, according to the BMJ study) experience long-lasting smell and taste dysfunction.