Study finds surprisingly little difference in hospitalization rates between children with COVID-19 and those with seasonal flu


September 09, 2020

As the drop strategies, pediatric hospitals will start off seeing young children with seasonal influenza A and B. At the exact same time, COVID-19 will be co-circulating in communities with the flu and other respiratory viruses, generating it much more challenging to discover and avert the novel coronavirus.  

With little released details instantly evaluating the clinical options of young children with COVID-19 to those with seasonal flu, researchers at Children’s Countrywide Medical center resolved to carry out a retrospective cohort review of people in the two teams. Their findings — released September eight in JAMA Community Open — shocked them.

The review — comprehensive in the post “Comparison of Scientific Features of US Children With COVID-19 vs Seasonal Influenza A and B” — showed no statistically significant dissimilarities in the prices of hospitalization, admission to the intensive care unit and mechanical ventilator use concerning the two teams. 

The other unanticipated discovering was that much more people with COVID-19 than those with seasonal influenza noted fever, cough, diarrhea or vomiting, headache, overall body ache or chest suffering at the time of prognosis, states Xiaoyan Music, Ph.D., M.Sc., M.B., the study’s principal investigator.

“I did not see this coming when I was contemplating about doing the review,” states Dr. Music, director of An infection Command and Epidemiology at Children’s Countrywide considering that 2007 and a professor of pediatrics at the George Washington College School of Drugs and Health and fitness Sciences. “It took various rounds of contemplating and combing through the details to influence myself that this was the summary.” 

Provided that a great deal continues to be unknown about COVID-19, the researchers’ discovery that young children with the ailment existing with much more signs or symptoms at the time of prognosis is a worthwhile one. 

“It’s a good cue from a prevention and planning point of view,” states Dr. Music. “We always emphasize early recognition and early isolation with COVID. Obtaining a clinical photograph in brain will guide clinicians as they diagnose people with signs or symptoms of the coronavirus.”

The review integrated 315 young children who were diagnosed with a laboratory-verified COVID-19 concerning March twenty five, 2020, and May well fifteen, 2020, and 1,402 young children who were diagnosed with a laboratory-verified seasonal influenza concerning Oct. 1, 2019, and June 6, 2020, at Children’s Countrywide. Asymptomatic people who analyzed beneficial for COVID-19 all through pre-admission or pre-procedural screening were excluded from the review.  

Of the 315 people who analyzed beneficial for COVID-19, 52% were male, with a median age of eight.four many years. Of these people, 54 (seventeen.1 %) were hospitalized, which include eighteen (five.seven%) who were admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) and ten (three.two%) who obtained mechanical ventilator therapy.  

Among the 1,402 people who analyzed beneficial for influenza A or B, 52% were male, with a median age of three.nine many years, and 291 (21.two%) were hospitalized, which include 143 for influenza A and 148 for influenza B. Ninety-8 people (seven.%) were admitted to the ICU, and 27 (1.nine%) obtained mechanical ventilator support. 

The review showed a slight variance in the age of young children hospitalized with COVID-19 in contrast to those hospitalized with seasonal influenza. People hospitalized with COVID-19 experienced a median age of nine.seven many years vs. those hospitalized with seasonal influenza who experienced a median age of four.two many years.

In both teams, fever was the most usually noted symptom at the time of prognosis adopted by cough. A greater proportion of people hospitalized with COVID-19 than those hospitalized with seasonal influenza noted fever (seventy six% vs. fifty five%), cough (forty eight% vs. 31%), diarrhea or vomiting (26% vs. 12%), headache (11% vs. three%), overall body ache/myalgia (22% vs. seven%), and chest suffering (11% vs. three%). 

Extra people hospitalized with COVID-19 than those with seasonal influenza noted sore throat or congestion (22% vs. twenty%) and shortness of breath (thirty% vs. twenty%), but the dissimilarities were not statistically significant.  

During the review interval, the researchers seen an abrupt drop of influenza cases at Children’s Countrywide just after community educational institutions closed in mid-March and remain-at-home orders were executed about two months afterwards to combat the local community unfold of COVID-19. Dr. Music states the impression of school closures on the unfold of COVID-19 between young children is the up coming area of review for her research staff.

“We want to assess the quantitative impression of school closures so we can figure out at what point the expense of closing educational institutions and remaining at home outweighs the benefit of lowering transmission of COVID-19 and burdens on the wellness care system,” she states. 

Dr. Music urges members of the local community “first and foremost to remain serene and be potent. We’re discovering new and worthwhile matters about this virus just about every day, which in switch improves care. The collision of the flu and COVID-19 this drop could necessarily mean an increase in pediatric hospitalizations. That is why it is critical to get your flu shot, for the reason that it can aid take at the very least one respiratory virus out of circulation.” 

Other researchers who contributed to this review involve Meghan Delaney, D.O. Rahul K. Shah, M.D. Joseph M. Campos, Ph.D. David L. Wessel, M.D. and Roberta L. DeBiasi, M.D.

Media make contact with: Beth Riggs | 301-233-4038