A year ago, pediatricians were unaware of these symptoms in their young patients. Now doctors are reporting more often about particularly serious long-term effects of a coronavirus infection.
19 cases with the diagnosis “Pediatric Inflammatory Multisystem Syndrome” – Pims for short – have already been treated at the Essen University Hospital, as reported by the magazine “Der Spiegel”. The immune system runs “amok” and could be life-threatening for the boys and girls, say doctors. The intensive care physician Christian Dohna-Schwake from Essen reports on children aged 5, 12 or 17 who were transferred to his ward with a high fever and unstable circulation. Pims is a rare but particularly insidious late consequence of a coronavirus infection. None of his Pims patients died, although the course was sometimes critical and life-threatening. The young patients had a high fever, skin rashes all over their bodies and some complained of severe abdominal pain.
Pediatric intensive care physicians now know that the syndrome is the result of a misguided immune response. Pims seems to occur in about every thousandth child infected with corona in Germany. Small children can also develop pims, but the majority of patients are significantly older. They are often between 7 and 10 years old, but again and again 13, 16 or even 20-year-olds are admitted to the hospitals with pims.
The doctor Christian Dohna-Schwake is therefore following the increase in corona infections with concern. This was also reported by the head of the Robert Koch Institute, Lothar Wieler. The numbers are currently increasing “very rapidly” among young people under the age of 15.
A register with Pims diagnoses has now been set up at the Dresden University Clinic. All clinics in Germany and Austria should report their cases.
Worrying news about Pims disease is now coming from the United States. Unlike in Germany, the US epidemic authority has already counted 33 deaths. According to the Dresden registry, half of the patients were discharged healthy. But every 10th child may have persistent problems.
This message was broadcast on March 21, 2021 on Deutschlandfunk.