Detectable SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA in feces of three children during recovery period of COVID-19 pneumonia

Tongqiang Zhang, Xiaojian Cui, Xue Zhao, Jinhu Wang, Jiafeng Zheng, Guifen Zheng, Wei Guo, Chunquan Cai, Sijia He, Yongsheng Xu
Journal of Medical Virology 2020, 92 (7): 909-914
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a newly emerging infectious disease caused by a novel coronavirus, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). After its first occurrence in Wuhan of China from December 2019, COVID-19 rapidly spread around the world. According to the World Health Organization statement on 13 March 2020, there had been over 132 500 confirmed cases globally. Nevertheless, the case reports of children are rare, which results in the lack of evidence for preventing and controlling of children's infection. Here, we report three cases of SARS-CoV-2 infected children diagnosed from 3 February to 17 February 2020 in Tianjin, China. All of these three cases experienced mild illness and recovered soon after the treatment, with the nucleic acid of throat swab turning negative within 14, 11, and 7 days after diagnosis, respectively. However, after been discharged, all three cases were tested SARS-CoV-2 positive in the stool samples within 10 days, in spite of their remained negative nucleic acid in throat swab specimens. Therefore, it is necessary to be aware of the possibility of fecal-oral transmission of SARS-CoV-2 infection, especially for children cases.

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