Eight more children in Los Angeles County have contracted an inflammatory condition connected to the coronavirus, bringing the total number of cases to 62, county public health officials announced Saturday.
Multisystem inflammatory syndrome, or MIS-C, is serious but relatively rare. In L.A. County, it has disproportionately affected Latino children. No further details about the eight new cases were available.
Children are generally less vulnerable to the coronavirus than adults and usually remain asymptomatic. The inflammatory reaction that results in MIS-C usually develops two to four weeks after exposure to the virus.
Symptoms of MIS-C can include a persistent fever, pain in the abdomen or neck, vomiting, diarrhea, rash, bloodshot eyes, low blood pressure and exhaustion. Inflammation of body parts, such as the heart, lungs, kidneys, brain, skin, eyes or gastrointestinal organs, is also a possible symptom.
Children have been coming down with MIS-C since early in the pandemic. In December, a child with a complex preexisting cardiac condition died of MIS-C in L.A. County — the only local death from the condition so far.
But in an indication of the seriousness of the illness, all 62 children with MIS-C in L.A. County were hospitalized, health officials said, with 45% treated in the intensive care unit.
Latino children accounted for nearly 74% of the cases in L.A. County, according to officials.
Nationwide, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported 1,659 MIS-C cases and 26 deaths since May.
The L.A. County MIS-C cases have been distributed relatively evenly among age groups: 31% were younger than 5, 37% between 5 and 11, and 32% between 12 and 20.
Nationwide, the CDC reported the average age of children affected was 8 years old.
If your child is displaying MIS-C symptoms, contact your doctor, or call 2-1-1, and L.A. County will help you find a doctor.