Young kids could spread Covid-19 as much as older children, adults

Young kids could spread Covid-19 as much as older children, adults

Young kids could spread Covid-19 as much as older children, adults

The ability of younger children to spread Covid-19 may have been under-recognised given the rapid and sustained closure of schools and daycare during the pandemic.

John Swartzberg, an infectious disease expert from UC Berkeley, says it is becoming increasingly clear COVID-19 is more than just a respiratory disease, and its long-term complications are yet to be seen.

One recent study in South Korea found children aged 10 to 19 transmitted COVID-19 within households as much as adults, but children under nine transmitted the virus at lower rates.

Overall, though, children have largely been spared the most severe consequences of COVID-19. "The team also said in the report That lamp study found that the higher the genetic material, the more spread the infection".

A cohort of 145 patients younger than age 1 month to 65 years separated by age found that the youngest children had significantly lower median cycle threshold (CT) values than older children or adults, suggesting they had equivalent or more viral nucleic acid in their upper respiratory tract than other age groups, reported Taylor Heald-Sargent, MD, PhD, of Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital in Chicago, and colleagues.

The authors state that this does not necessarily mean that children younger than five are more capable of passing the virus on to others, but suggest that the findings could influence the debate over the reopening of schools.

For the study, published in JAMA Pediatrics, the team collected nasopharyngeal swabs from inpatient, outpatient, emergency department, and drivethrough t children at a pediatric tertiary medical center in Chicago.

"We don't know that for sure", Malley, who was not involved with the new study, said.

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'Our study was not created to prove that younger children spread COVID-19 as much as adults, but it is a possibility, ' said Heald-Sargent.

None of the patients had heart problems before the virus or experienced heart symptoms while they had COVID-19.

Researchers say the findings suggest that children could potentially be drivers of virus spread in the general population.

It should also be mentioned that the study had its limitations.

A small study conducted on 100 patients in Germany has shown that recovered patients had heart conditions and some also suffered inflammation of heart muscles and tissues. The tests look for pieces of the virus's RNA, or genetic code, to make a diagnosis.

"I've heard lots of people saying, 'Well, kids aren't susceptible, kids don't get infected.' And this clearly shows that's not true", said Stacey Schultz-Cherry, a virologist at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital to the New York Times.

They said the behavioral habits of young children, and the close quarters they occupy in school and day care settings raise concern for amplified transmission of the virus as public health restrictions are eased.

'In addition to public health implications, this population will be important for targeting immunization efforts as SARS-CoV-2 vaccines become available, ' they wrote.

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