JOURNAL ARTICLE

Kawasaki-like multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children during the covid-19 pandemic in Paris, France: prospective observational study

Julie Toubiana, Clément Poirault, Alice Corsia, Fanny Bajolle, Jacques Fourgeaud, François Angoulvant, Agathe Debray, Romain Basmaci, Elodie Salvador, Sandra Biscardi, Pierre Frange, Martin Chalumeau, Jean-Laurent Casanova, Jérémie F Cohen, Slimane Allali
BMJ: British Medical Journal 2020 June 3, 369: m2094
32493739

OBJECTIVES: To describe the characteristics of children and adolescents affected by an outbreak of Kawasaki-like multisystem inflammatory syndrome and to evaluate a potential temporal association with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection.

DESIGN: Prospective observational study.

SETTING: General paediatric department of a university hospital in Paris, France.

PARTICIPANTS: 21 children and adolescents (aged ≤18 years) with features of Kawasaki disease who were admitted to hospital between 27 April and 11 May 2020 and followed up until discharge by 15 May 2020.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The primary outcomes were clinical and biological data, imaging and echocardiographic findings, treatment, and outcomes. Nasopharyngeal swabs were prospectively tested for SARS-CoV-2 using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and blood samples were tested for IgG antibodies to the virus.

RESULTS: 21 children and adolescents (median age 7.9 (range 3.7-16.6) years) were admitted with features of Kawasaki disease over a 15 day period, with 12 (57%) of African ancestry. 12 (57%) presented with Kawasaki disease shock syndrome and 16 (76%) with myocarditis. 17 (81%) required intensive care support. All 21 patients had noticeable gastrointestinal symptoms during the early stage of illness and high levels of inflammatory markers. 19 (90%) had evidence of recent SARS-CoV-2 infection (positive RT-PCR result in 8/21, positive IgG antibody detection in 19/21). All 21 patients received intravenous immunoglobulin and 10 (48%) also received corticosteroids. The clinical outcome was favourable in all patients. Moderate coronary artery dilations were detected in 5 (24%) of the patients during hospital stay. By 15 May 2020, after 8 (5-17) days of hospital stay, all patients were discharged home.

CONCLUSIONS: The ongoing outbreak of Kawasaki-like multisystem inflammatory syndrome among children and adolescents in the Paris area might be related to SARS-CoV-2. In this study an unusually high proportion of the affected children and adolescents had gastrointestinal symptoms, Kawasaki disease shock syndrome, and were of African ancestry.

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