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1.
Frontiers in pediatrics ; 10, 2022.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1824098

ABSTRACT

Background Persistent respiratory symptoms after severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) in adults are frequent, and there can be long-term impairment of pulmonary function. To date, only preliminary evidence is available on persistent respiratory sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 in children and adolescents. Our objective was to examine the long-term effects of symptomatic and asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infections on pulmonary function in this age group in a single-center, controlled, prospective study. Methods Participants with serological or polymerase chain reaction-based evidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection were recruited from a population-based study of seroconversion rates. Multiple-breath washout (MBW), body plethysmography, and diffusion capacity testing were performed for children and adolescents. Participants were interviewed about their symptoms during the acute phase of infection and long-lasting symptoms. Cases were compared with SARS-CoV-2 seronegative controls from the same population-based study with and without history of respiratory infection within 6 months prior to assessment. Primary endpoints were differences in pulmonary function, including diffusion capacity and MBW, between participants with and without evidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Secondary endpoints included correlation between lung function and long-lasting symptoms as well as disease severity. Findings In total, 73 seropositive children and adolescents (5–18 years) were recruited after an average of 2.6 months (range 0.4–6.0) following SARS-CoV-2 infection. Among 19 patients (27.1%) who complained of persistent or newly emerged symptoms since SARS-CoV-2, 8 (11.4%) reported respiratory symptoms. No significant differences were detected in frequency of abnormal pulmonary function when comparing cases with 45 controls, including 14 (31.1%) with a history of previous infection (SARS-CoV-2: 12, 16.4%;controls: 12, 27.7%;odds ratio 0.54, 95% confidence interval 0.22–1.34). Only two patients with persistent respiratory symptoms showed abnormal pulmonary function. Multivariate analysis revealed reduced forced vital capacity (p = 0.012) in patients with severe SARS-CoV-2 infection. Interpretation Pulmonary function is rarely impaired in children and adolescents after SARS-CoV-2 infection, except from those with severe infection, and did not differ between SARS-CoV-2 and other previous infections, suggesting that SARS-CoV-2 is not more likely to cause pulmonary sequelae than other infections. The discrepancy between persisting respiratory symptoms and normal pulmonary function suggests a different underlying pathology such as dysfunctional breathing.

2.
EuropePMC;
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-328821

ABSTRACT

Background: From March – June 2021, the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic occurred in Germany. First and second wave evaluations showed an increase in mental health problems and a reduction of quality of life in adolescents. In August 2021, two vaccines against COVID-19 were approved for adolescents aged 12-17 years in Germany. Aim of the study was to assess mental health and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) after 1.5 years of COVID-19 pandemic in adolescents who decided to receive a vaccination. Methods: In the German region of Siegen-Wittgenstein, all students from 12-17 years from secondary level schools, vocational schools and universities were offered a prioritized vaccination against COVID-19. Mental health and HRQoL were assessed at the first vaccination appointment by self- and parental report. Adolescents and their parents completed the Strength and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) and the KIDSCREEN-10. Results: Data from 1412 adolescents (49.2% female, 47.7% male;mean age 14.3 years, SD=1.64) and 908 parents were collected. Mean self-reported HRQoL was T=53.7 (SD=11.2), in boys significantly higher than in girls (56.0 vs. 51.3), and significantly higher in younger (12-14 years) than in older (15-17 years) adolescents (56.2 vs. 51.5). Parental-reported HRQoL was T=51.8 (SD=12.8). In total, 18.5% of adolescents reported clinically relevant psychological symptoms, especially peer problems (23.7%), emotional problems (16.7%) and hyperactivity (17.2%). Girls reported significantly higher scores on emotional, peer and total problems than boys, whereas younger adolescents reported more hyperactivity and less emotional and peer problems than older ones. Comparing the present data to evaluations after the first and second wave of COVID-19 in Germany, adolescents facing vaccination after the third wave rated a higher HRQoL and reported less mental health problems. The data from the present study are comparable to those from pre-COVID evaluations. Conclusion: After 1.5 years of living with the pandemic, adolescents may have adapted to the changes in everyday life which has lowered the anticipated stress. Further, the relaxation of restrictions, better school organization and the prospect of the vaccination may have increased optimism, wellbeing and contentment, leading to declining but still alarming rates of psychological symptoms.

3.
EuropePMC;
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-328632

ABSTRACT

The German government initiated the Network University Medicine (NUM) in early 2020 to improve national research activities on the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic. To this end, 36 German Academic Medical Centers started to collaborate on 13 projects, with the largest being the National Pandemic Cohort Network (NAPKON). The NAPKON’s goal is creating the most comprehensive Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) cohort in Germany. Within NAPKON, adult and pediatric patients are observed in three complementary cohort platforms (Cross-Sectoral, High-Resolution and Population-Based) from the initial infection until up to three years of follow-up. Study procedures comprise comprehensive clinical and imaging diagnostics, quality-of-life assessment, patient-reported outcomes and biosampling. The three cohort platforms build on four infrastructure core units (Interaction, Biosampling, Epidemiology, and Integration) and collaborations with NUM projects. Key components of the data capture, regulatory, and data privacy are based on the German Centre for Cardiovascular Research. By December 01, 2021, 34 university and 34 non-university hospitals have enrolled 4,241 patients with local data quality reviews performed on 2,812 (66%). 47% were female, the median age was 53 (IQR: 38-63)) and 3 pediatric cases were included. 30% of patients were hospitalized, 11% admitted to an intensive care unit, and 4% of patients deceased while enrolled. 7,143 visits with biosampling in 3,595 patients were conducted by November 29, 2021. In this overview article, we summarize NAPKON’s design, relevant milestones including first study population characteristics, and outline the potential of NAPKON for German and international research activities. Trial registration: · https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT04768998· https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT04747366· https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT04679584

4.
SSRN;
Preprint in English | SSRN | ID: ppcovidwho-325923

ABSTRACT

Background: Long-term neurological complaints after SARS-CoV-2 infection occur in 4–66% of children and adolescents. Controlled studies on the integrity of the peripheral nerve system are scarce. Therefore, we examined the somatosensory function in children and adolescents after SARS-CoV-2 infection in a case-control study compared with age-matched individuals. Methods: 81 subjects after SARS-CoV-2 infection (n=44 female, 11·4±3·5y, n=75 SARS-CoV-2 seropositive, n=47 asymptomatic infection) were compared to 38 controls without SARS-CoV-2 infection (26 female, 10·3±3·4y, n=15 with other infection within last 6 months). After standardised interviews and neurological examinations, large fibre (tactile and vibration detection thresholds) and small fibre (cold and warm detection thresholds, paradoxical heat sensation) functions were assessed on both feet following a validated protocol. Statistical analyses: t-test and Chi-squared test. Findings: None of the controls, but 27 of the 81 patients (33%, p<0·001) reported persistent complaints 2·7±1·9 (0·8-8·5) months after SARS-CoV-2 infection, most often reduced exercise capacity (16%), fatigue (13%), pain (9%), or paraesthesia (6%). Reflex deficits or paresis were missing, but somatosensory profiles showed significantly increased detection thresholds for thermal (especially warm) and vibration stimuli compared to controls. Approximately 36% of the patients after SARS-CoV-2, but none of the controls revealed an abnormal sensory loss in at least one parameter (p<0·01). Sensory loss was characterised in 26% by large and 12% by small fibre dysfunction, the latter appearing more frequently in children with prior symptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection. Myalgia/paraesthesia was indicative of somatosensory dysfunction. In all eight re-examined children, the nerve function recovered after 2–4 months. Interpretation: This study provides evidence that in a subgroup of children and adolescents previously infected with SARS-CoV-2, regardless of their complaints, the function of large or small nerve fibres is presumably reversibly impaired. Trial Registration Details: DRKS00022434, German clinical trial register. Funding Information: Intramural grant of Ruhr University Bochum, Germany (FoRUM). Declaration of Interests: The authors declare no conflict of interest. Ethics Approval Statement: Ethical approval was provided by the Ethics Committee of the Ruhr University Bochum, Germany (No. 20-6927). Informed consent was obtained from all subjects involved in the study. Keywords: SARS-CoV-2, Quantitative Sensory Testing, long-COVID

5.
Klin Padiatr ; 2022 Feb 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1671685

ABSTRACT

This narrative review sums up data from the SARS-CoV-2-pandemia on preexisting disease/underlying conditions/comorbidities and risk factors in children for severe COVID-19 and MIS-C/PIMS-TS as well as hospitalization and mortality. Young infants and adolescents are at highest risk of hospital and PICU admission. Two or more comorbidities rather than single entities pose a risk for more severe courses of SARS-CoV-2 infection in children. Asthma and malignancy do not increase complication rates. MIS-C/PIMS-TS is not associated with any specific underlying disease.

6.
Children (Basel) ; 9(1)2022 Jan 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1637418

ABSTRACT

In the current SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, wearing a face mask is mandatory again during school lessons. There are no controlled studies in children to date indicating an effect on cognitive performance from wearing face masks. In a randomized controlled trial, we analysed the influence of face masks on cognitive performance of pupils during regular school lessons. Pupils (n = 133, fifth to seventh grade) were randomized by alternating allocation into control (with masks, n = 65) and intervention groups (without mask, n = 68). After two school lessons with (control) and without (intervention) face masks in class, all pupils performed digital tests for cognitive performance regarding attention and executive functions (switch, Corsi block-tapping, 2-back and flanker task). Overall, there were no significant differences in cognitive performance between both groups, masks vs. no masks. Wearing face masks has no significant influence on attention and executive functions of pupils and can still be recommended during school lessons.

7.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-296968

ABSTRACT

In the current Sars-CoV-2 pandemic, wearing a face mask was mandatory and is still desired during school lessons. There are no controlled studies in children to date indicating an effect on cognitive performance wearing face masks. In a randomized controlled trial, we analysed the influence of face masks on cognitive performance of pupils during regular school lessons. Pupils (n=133, 5th to 7th grade) were randomized by alternating allocation into control (with masks, n=65) and intervention groups (without mask, n=68). After two school lessons with (control) and without (intervention) face masks in class all pupils performed digital tests for cognitive performance regarding attention and executive functions (Switch, CORSI block tapping, 2-back and flanker task). Overall, there were no significant differences in cognitive performance between both groups, masks vs. no masks. Wearing face masks has no significant influence on attention and executive functions of pupils and can still be recommended during school lessons.

8.
Infect Dis Rep ; 13(4): 957-964, 2021 Nov 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1512256

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 infection rates in children and adolescents are often underestimated due to asymptomatic or oligosymptomatic infections. Seroprevalence studies can reveal the magnitude of "silent" infections in this age group and help to assess the risk of infection for children but also their role in spreading the disease. In total, 2045 children and their parents from the Ruhr region were finally included after the exclusion of drop-outs. Seroconversion rates among children of all age groups increased from 0.5% to 8% during the study period and were about three to fourfold higher than the officially registered PCR-based infection rates. Only 41% recalled symptoms of infection; 59% were asymptomatic. In 51% of the infected children, at least one parent also developed SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. Depending on local incidences, the rates of seroconversion rose to different levels during the study period. Although the dynamics of infection within the study cohort mirrors local incidence, the figure of SARS-CoV-2 infections in children and adolescents appears to be high. Reported contact with SARS-CoV-2-infected individuals in the same household carries a high risk of infection.

9.
Pneumologie ; 75(11): 869-900, 2021 Nov.
Article in German | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1392935

ABSTRACT

The German Society of Pneumology initiated the AWMFS1 guideline Post-COVID/Long-COVID. In a broad interdisciplinary approach, this S1 guideline was designed based on the current state of knowledge.The clinical recommendation describes current post-COVID/long-COVID symptoms, diagnostic approaches, and therapies.In addition to the general and consensus introduction, a subject-specific approach was taken to summarize the current state of knowledge.The guideline has an expilcit practical claim and will be continuously developed and adapted by the author team based on the current increase in knowledge.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pulmonary Medicine , COVID-19/complications , Consensus , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
12.
Lancet Child Adolesc Health ; 4(9): 653-661, 2020 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-613887

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: To date, few data on paediatric COVID-19 have been published, and most reports originate from China. This study aimed to capture key data on children and adolescents with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection across Europe to inform physicians and health-care service planning during the ongoing pandemic. METHODS: This multicentre cohort study involved 82 participating health-care institutions across 25 European countries, using a well established research network-the Paediatric Tuberculosis Network European Trials Group (ptbnet)-that mainly comprises paediatric infectious diseases specialists and paediatric pulmonologists. We included all individuals aged 18 years or younger with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection, detected at any anatomical site by RT-PCR, between April 1 and April 24, 2020, during the initial peak of the European COVID-19 pandemic. We explored factors associated with need for intensive care unit (ICU) admission and initiation of drug treatment for COVID-19 using univariable analysis, and applied multivariable logistic regression with backwards stepwise analysis to further explore those factors significantly associated with ICU admission. FINDINGS: 582 individuals with PCR-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection were included, with a median age of 5·0 years (IQR 0·5-12·0) and a sex ratio of 1·15 males per female. 145 (25%) had pre-existing medical conditions. 363 (62%) individuals were admitted to hospital. 48 (8%) individuals required ICU admission, 25 (4%) mechanical ventilation (median duration 7 days, IQR 2-11, range 1-34), 19 (3%) inotropic support, and one (<1%) extracorporeal membrane oxygenation. Significant risk factors for requiring ICU admission in multivariable analyses were being younger than 1 month (odds ratio 5·06, 95% CI 1·72-14·87; p=0·0035), male sex (2·12, 1·06-4·21; p=0·033), pre-existing medical conditions (3·27, 1·67-6·42; p=0·0015), and presence of lower respiratory tract infection signs or symptoms at presentation (10·46, 5·16-21·23; p<0·0001). The most frequently used drug with antiviral activity was hydroxychloroquine (40 [7%] patients), followed by remdesivir (17 [3%] patients), lopinavir-ritonavir (six [1%] patients), and oseltamivir (three [1%] patients). Immunomodulatory medication used included corticosteroids (22 [4%] patients), intravenous immunoglobulin (seven [1%] patients), tocilizumab (four [1%] patients), anakinra (three [1%] patients), and siltuximab (one [<1%] patient). Four children died (case-fatality rate 0·69%, 95% CI 0·20-1·82); at study end, the remaining 578 were alive and only 25 (4%) were still symptomatic or requiring respiratory support. INTERPRETATION: COVID-19 is generally a mild disease in children, including infants. However, a small proportion develop severe disease requiring ICU admission and prolonged ventilation, although fatal outcome is overall rare. The data also reflect the current uncertainties regarding specific treatment options, highlighting that additional data on antiviral and immunomodulatory drugs are urgently needed. FUNDING: ptbnet is supported by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Delivery of Health Care/organization & administration , Intensive Care Units/organization & administration , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , COVID-19 , Child , Child, Preschool , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Europe/epidemiology , Female , Follow-Up Studies , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Male , Patient Admission/trends , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2
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