In news- Recently, WHO has issued guidelines on the treatment of children with multisystem inflammatory syndrome associated with COVID-19 (MIS-C).
- Multisystem inflammatory syndrome (MIS) can affect children (MIS-C) and adults (MIS-A).
- MIS-C is a rare but serious condition where children with COVID-19 develop inflammation affecting different organs of the body, including the heart, lungs, kidneys, brain, skin, eyes, or gastrointestinal organs.
- In children who go on to develop MIS-C, some organs and tissues become severely inflamed.
- The cause of inflammation underlying MIS-C is not well understood.
- Patients with MIS-C were initially reported to show features similar to Kawasaki disease, which causes swelling (inflammation) in the walls of medium-sized arteries, particularly the coronary arteries in children.
- However, children with MIS-C are generally older (mostly school-aged) than patients with Kawasaki disease (mostly younger than five years of age) and presented with intestinal involvement and heart attack.
- Since there is no diagnostic test, the conditions are defined by fever and elevated inflammatory markers in children with current or recent SARS-CoV-2 infection or COVID exposure within four weeks before the onset of symptoms.
- Clinical presentation for organ dysfunction includes abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhoea, skin rash, conjunctivitis, red cracked lips and, in severe cases, hypotension (low blood pressure) and shock.
- WHO first described this condition in May 2020, and provided a preliminary clinical definition.
- WHO’s updated guidelines recommend the use of corticosteroids in hospitalized children (aged 0-18 years) with this condition, in addition to supportive treatment and care.
Corticosteroids are a class of steroid hormones that are produced in the adrenal cortex of vertebrates, as well as the synthetic analogues of these hormones. There are two kinds of corticosteroids : glucocorticoids and mineralocorticoids. They have various metabolic functions and some are used to treat inflammation.
Source: Times of India