New York Times
Why does COVID KILL so many young children in Brazil? Doctors are baffled.
RIO DE JANEIRO – Frustrated because of the fever in the toddler that didn’t go away, the mother took the girl Letizia to the hospital. Doctors have worrisome news about COVID-19, but they are convinced, noting that children rarely suffer from serious symptoms, said mother Ariana Niro Gemarinheiro. Less than two weeks later, on February 27, Letizia died in a hospital intensive care unit in Maringa, southern Brazil, after several days of breathing difficulties. Sign up for The Morning newsletter from the New York Times. “It happened so quickly and she was gone,”; says 33-year-old Marinheiro. “She’s everything to me.” COVID-19 is devastating Brazil and from streaks. The new footprint that experts are trying to understand appear to be killing babies and young children at an unusually high rate. Since the outbreak, 832 children five and under have died from the virus, according to Brazil’s health ministry. Comparable information is scarce as countries monitor the impact of the virus differently. But in the United States, which has a larger population than Brazil, and has higher overall deaths from COVID-19, 139 children fourth and lower have died. And Brazil’s official number of child deaths is likely to be small, as the lack of extensive testing has left many cases undiagnosed. Fatima Marinho, an epidemiologist at the University of Sao Paulo, said Marinho, who has led studies on the number of child deaths based on suspected and confirmed cases, estimates that children under the age of five are more likely to be five years old. 2,200 people have died since the outbreak began, including more than 1,600 children younger than a year. “We saw a huge impact on children,” Marinho said. We have never seen this anywhere else in the world. ”Experts in Brazil, Europe and the United States agree that the number of child deaths from COVID-19 in Brazil appears to be exceptionally high. The American Academy of Pediatrics and pediatric infectious disease specialist at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus. “Of any measures we are following in the United States, those numbers are somewhat higher.” There is no evidence of the effects of different forms of the virus, which scientists say are leading to more serious COVID cases in adulthood. Youngsters are healthy and causing more deaths in Brazil – to infants and children. But experts say the pattern appears to lead to higher mortality rates in pregnant women. Some women infected with the coronavirus will give birth to premature or premature babies who have already been infected with the virus. André Ricardo Ribas Freitas, an epidemiologist at São Leopoldo Mandic College in Campinas, who led the latest study on variable effects, “We can confirm that the P.1 variant is much more severe in pregnant women,” said Ribas Freitas. Often, if a pregnant woman has the virus, the baby may not survive or both may die. ”Experts say the lack of timely and adequate access to children’s health care when they fall ill can be a decisive factor. say Experts say that in the United States and Europe, early treatment is key to the recovery of children infected with the virus. In Brazil, over-exposed doctors are often late to confirm the infection in children, Marinho said. “The children were not tested,” she said. It’s so bad that it is suspected of COVID-19, ”said Dr. Larache Kerr Damian, head of critical care at Texas Children’s Hospital. It’s still very low, but children living in countries with irregular medical care are more at risk. “Children who may need a little oxygen today may need a ventilator next week if they don’t have access to oxygen. And the steroids that we give early in the disease process, ”says Shekerdemian,“ so what could end up with a simple hospitalization in my world could result in children needing more affordable medical care. They can’t get it if there is a delay in access to care. ”A study published in the Journal of Pediatric Infectious Diseases in January found that children in Brazil and four other Latin American countries developed COVID- 19 In more severe and multiple cases of multiple systemic inflammatory syndrome, which is a It has a rare and severe immune response to the virus compared to With information from China, Europe and North America Before the outbreak began, millions of Brazilians living in impoverished areas had limited access to basic health care.In recent months, the system has been devastated by a large influx of patients. In critically ill care units, chronic bed shortages have been linked to “obstacles to access for many,” said Dr. Ana Luisa Pacheco, pediatric infectious disease specialist at the Heitor Vieira Dourado Foundation for Tropical Medicine in Manau. “For some children, a three or four hour boat ride to the hospital,” said the pediatric case, amid the widespread spread of the infection in Brazil, which experts say the president’s cavalry response has. Jair Bolsonaro continued to contend with the outbreak and his government’s refusal to take drastic measures to promote social alienation. A backward economy has left millions of people without sufficient income or food, forcing many to become vulnerable to infection while looking for work. Some children who have already died of the virus have health problems that make them more vulnerable, however, Marinho estimates they represent more than a quarter of all deaths among children under 10, that shows. Healthy children also appear to be at higher risk from the virus in Brazil. Letizia Marinhero was a child, said her mother. A healthy baby who had just started walking, she had never been ill, Marinheiro said.Marinheiro, who was ill along with her husband Diego, 39, believed that Letizia could be alive if her illness was acquired. Treatment was more urgent. “I think they didn’t believe she was this sick, they didn’t believe it could happen to the child,” Marinheiro said. She said four days into the pediatric hospital admission, doctors had not yet examined the Letizia’s lungs thoroughly.Marinheiro was still unsure how her family was sick. She kept Leticia, the first child the couple had wanted for years, both at home and away from everyone. Her husband, who is a supplier of hair salon products, is careful to avoid contacting customers, even though he still works to keep the family away.For Marinheiro, her daughter’s sudden death has left a hole in her life. Her As the epidemic worsened, she said she wished other parents to stop assessing the danger of the virus that has taken Leticia from her. In her town, she watched as the family held a birthday party for the kids and the authorities pushed the school back up. “This virus is inexplicable,” she says. “It’s like playing the lottery. And we never believed it would happen to us. Only when it takes someone from your family. ”This article originally appeared in The New York Times Copyright © 2021 The New York Times Company.