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Epidemiology of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in ChildrenA Step Closer to Understanding Who, Where, and When

Educational Objective
To identify the key insights or developments described in this article
1 Credit CME

Death and disease in adult patients from the COVID-19 pandemic continue unabated across the world well into 2021,1 and why children have escaped severe disease from this virus2 remains one of the most intriguing gaps in our understanding of the immune response to this virus. Of equal imperative, what insights can be gained via a deeper understanding as to why some children do become critically ill from COVID-19 and the more recently described multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C)? Unlocking the key immunologic mechanisms driving these outcomes will likely initially emerge from meticulous epidemiologic studies that describe the few children who do get very ill from this disease.

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CME Disclosure Statement: Unless noted, all individuals in control of content reported no relevant financial relationships. If applicable, all relevant financial relationships have been mitigated.

Article Information

Corresponding Author: Jennifer A. Blumenthal, MD, Critical Care Medicine and Infectious Diseases, Division of Critical Care Medicine, Boston Children’s Hospital, 300 Longwood Ave, Mail Stop Bader 634, Boston, MA 02115 (jennifer.blumenthal@childrens.harvard.edu).

Published Online: April 6, 2021. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2021.0638

Conflict of Interest Disclosures: None reported.

References
1.
Johns Hopkins University of Medicine Coronavirus Resource Center. COVID-19 dashboard by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University (JHU). Accessed February 28, 2021. https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/map.html
2.
Leidman  E , Duca  LM , Omura  JD , Proia  K , Stephens  JW , Sauber-Schatz  EK .  COVID-19 trends among persons aged 0-24 years: United States, March 1-December 12, 2020.   MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2021;70(3):88-94. doi:10.15585/mmwr.mm7003e1PubMedGoogle ScholarCrossref
3.
Belay  ED , Abrams  J , Oster  ME ,  et al.  Trends in geographic and temporal distribution of US children with multisystem inflammatory syndrome during the COVID-19 pandemic.   JAMA Pediatr. Published online April 6, 2021. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2021.0630Google Scholar
4.
Rostad  CA , Chahroudi  A , Mantus  G ,  et al.  Quantitative SARS-CoV-2 serology in children with multisystem inflammatory syndrome (MIS-C).   Pediatrics. 2020;146(6):e2020018242. doi:10.1542/peds.2020-018242Google Scholar
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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Information for healthcare providers about multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C). Accessed February 28, 2021. https://www.cdc.gov/ mis-c/hcp/
6.
World Health Organization. Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children and adolescents with COVID-19. Accessed February 28, 2020. https://www.who.int/publications/i/item/multisystem-inflammatory-syndrome-in-children-and-adolescents-with-covid-19
7.
Feldstein  LR , Tenforde  MW , Friedman  KG ,  et al; Overcoming COVID-19 Investigators.  Characteristics and outcomes of us children and adolescents with multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) compared with severe acute COVID-19.   JAMA. 2021;325(11):1074-1087. doi:10.1001/jama.2021.2091Google ScholarCrossref
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