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

September 09, 2020

As the slide strategies, pediatric hospitals will get started viewing little ones with seasonal influenza A and B. At the same time, COVID-19 will be co-circulating in communities with the flu and other respiratory viruses, producing it much more tricky to identify and protect against the novel coronavirus.  

With little printed knowledge instantly comparing the clinical attributes of little ones with COVID-19 to all those with seasonal flu, researchers at Children’s National Hospital determined to conduct a retrospective cohort review of patients in the two teams. Their conclusions — printed September eight in JAMA Network Open up — shocked them.

The review — in-depth in the posting “Comparison of Scientific Functions of US Small children With COVID-19 vs Seasonal Influenza A and B” — confirmed no statistically substantial distinctions in the prices of hospitalization, admission to the intensive treatment device and mechanical ventilator use in between the two teams. 

The other unanticipated acquiring was that much more patients with COVID-19 than all those with seasonal influenza described fever, cough, diarrhea or vomiting, headache, body ache or chest discomfort at the time of analysis, states Xiaoyan Song, Ph.D., M.Sc., M.B., the study’s principal investigator.

“I did not see this coming when I was wondering about executing the review,” states Dr. Song, director of An infection Handle and Epidemiology at Children’s National considering the fact that 2007 and a professor of pediatrics at the George Washington University School of Medication and Health Sciences. “It took many rounds of wondering and combing as a result of the knowledge to convince myself that this was the conclusion.” 

Offered that substantially stays unknown about COVID-19, the researchers’ discovery that little ones with the illness existing with much more indications at the time of analysis is a important one. 

“It’s a fantastic cue from a avoidance and preparing standpoint,” states Dr. Song. “We often emphasize early recognition and early isolation with COVID. Obtaining a clinical picture in mind will support clinicians as they diagnose patients with indications of the coronavirus.”

The review incorporated 315 little ones who were diagnosed with a laboratory-verified COVID-19 in between March twenty five, 2020, and May fifteen, 2020, and 1,402 little ones who were diagnosed with a laboratory-verified seasonal influenza in between Oct. 1, 2019, and June six, 2020, at Children’s National. Asymptomatic patients who examined constructive for COVID-19 in the course of pre-admission or pre-procedural screening were excluded from the review.  

Of the 315 patients who examined constructive for COVID-19, fifty two% were male, with a median age of eight.4 a long time. Of these patients, 54 (17.1 %) were hospitalized, such as 18 (5.7%) who were admitted to the intensive treatment device (ICU) and ten (three.2%) who obtained mechanical ventilator treatment method.  

Among the the 1,402 patients who examined constructive for influenza A or B, fifty two% were male, with a median age of three.nine a long time, and 291 (21.2%) were hospitalized, such as 143 for influenza A and 148 for influenza B. Ninety-eight patients (7.%) were admitted to the ICU, and 27 (1.nine%) obtained mechanical ventilator support. 

The review confirmed a slight difference in the age of little ones hospitalized with COVID-19 in comparison to all those hospitalized with seasonal influenza. Clients hospitalized with COVID-19 had a median age of nine.7 a long time vs. all those hospitalized with seasonal influenza who had a median age of 4.2 a long time.

In both of those teams, fever was the most generally described symptom at the time of analysis adopted by cough. A greater proportion of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 than all those hospitalized with seasonal influenza described fever (76% vs. 55%), cough (forty eight% vs. 31%), diarrhea or vomiting (26% vs. twelve%), headache (11% vs. three%), body ache/myalgia (22% vs. 7%), and chest discomfort (11% vs. three%). 

More patients hospitalized with COVID-19 than all those with seasonal influenza described sore throat or congestion (22% vs. twenty%) and shortness of breath (30% vs. twenty%), but the distinctions were not statistically substantial.  

All through the review period, the researchers observed an abrupt decline of influenza situations at Children’s National soon after neighborhood colleges shut in mid-March and keep-at-house orders were implemented about two weeks later on to beat the neighborhood spread of COVID-19. Dr. Song states the effects of college closures on the spread of COVID-19 among little ones is the following region of review for her analysis group.

“We want to assess the quantitative effects of college closures so we can establish at what position the price tag of closing colleges and being at house outweighs the profit of minimizing transmission of COVID-19 and burdens on the wellbeing treatment system,” she states. 

Dr. Song urges users of the neighborhood “first and foremost to keep relaxed and be solid. We’re mastering new and important matters about this virus each and every working day, which in turn increases treatment. The collision of the flu and COVID-19 this slide could mean an improve in pediatric hospitalizations. Which is why it is significant to get your flu shot, because it can aid consider at minimum 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 contact: Beth Riggs | 301-233-4038