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Cardiovascular Journal of Africa ; 33(SUPPL):61, 2021.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-1766887


Introduction: Studies show that children account for only 1-5% of diagnosed COVID-19 cases, they have milder disease than adults and deaths are extremely rare. The complete clinical picture of pediatric COVID-19 has not yet been fully reported or defined. Additionally, the South African pediatric population has unique clinical characteristics and risk implications and needs investigating. We aimed to characterize COVID-19 in Cape Town children. Methods: The UCT COVID-19 pediatric repository is a prospective cohort recruited via convenience sampling at 3 Western Cape Hospitals. All patients ≤ 18 years who test COVID-19 positive are eligible for inclusion in the study. Results: To date 227 participants, 56%(125/227) male with median age 2 years (IQR:0-6), have been enrolled. Only 28(12%) participants were in contact with a confirmed COVID-19 positive case, 67% of these, were first degree relatives, 28% second degree relatives and 6% health care workers. Comorbidities were present in 125(56%) participants. Of 32 recorded comorbidities, congenital heart disease (CHD), found in 7% of participants, ranked third. CHD subtypes included PDA (4), Tetralogy of Fallot (3), AVSD (2), Pulmonary atresia with VSD (2), truncus arteriosus (1), Coarctation of the Aorta (1), Congenital aortic valve stenosis (1), and ASD (1). Other cardiac comorbidities were, cardiomyopathy (2), primary pulmonary hypertension (1) and rhabdomyoma (1). On presentation 173 (76%) were symptomatic. Predominant symptoms included cough 40%, history of fever 36%, documented fever 34%, difficulty breathing 28%, and nausea or vomiting 20%. On examination, 65% had abnormal heart rates, 47% abnormal respiratory rates, 35% were in respiratory distress and 24% were hypoxic. Of the 227 patients, 169(74%) were admitted to hospital and 33 (15%) were admitted to ICU. In the ICU 79% of patients required non-invasive and 24% invasive ventilation, median length of ICU admission was 3 days (IQR:2-7.5). During admission 38(17%) patients developed COVID-19 complications: secondary infection 10%, sepsis 4%, MIS-C 2%, and myocarditis or new onset heart failure 1%) and 2(0.9%) died, including one patient with AVSD, who presented with severe pulmonary hypertension and acute heart failure post cardiac surgery. Conclusion: We present the initial findings of the UCT pediatric COVID-19 registry. We anticipate that these data will help to complete the clinical picture of COVID-19 in the South African pediatric population.