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Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-20184242

ABSTRACT

BackgroundTo date, there are no comprehensive data on pediatric COVID-19 from Latin America. This study aims to assess COVID-19 and Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome (MIS-C) in Latin American children, in order to appropriately plan and allocate resources to face the pandemic on a local and International lever MethodsAmbispective multicentre cohort study from five Latin American countries. Children aged 18 years or younger with microbiologically confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection were included. Findings409 children were included, with a median age of 53.0 years (IQR 0.6-9.0). Of these, 95 191 (23.2%) were diagnosed with MIS-C. 191 (46.7%) children were admitted to hospital and 52 (12.7%) required admission to a Pediatric Intensive Care Unite (PICU). 92 (22.5%) patients required oxygen support: 8 (2%) were started on continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) and 29 (7%) on mechanical ventilation. 35 (8.5%) patients required inotropic support. The following factors were associated with PICU admission: pre-existing medical condition (P < 0.0001), immunodeficiency (P = 0.01), lower respiratory tract infection (P< 0.0001), gastrointestinal symptoms (P = 0.006), radiological changes suggestive of pneumonia and acute respiratory distress syndrome (P< 0.0001), low socioeconomic conditions (P 0.009). ConclusionsThis study shows a generally more severe form of COVID-19 and a high number of MIS-C in Latin American children, compared with studies from China, Europe and North America, and support current evidence of a more severe disease in Latin/Hyspanic children or in people of lower socioeconomic level. The findings highlight an urgent need of more data of COVID-19 in South America.

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