Background: The long-term sequelae of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in children remain poorly characterised. This study aimed to assess long-term outcomes in children previously hospitalised with Covid-19 and associated risk factors. Methods: This is a prospective cohort study of children (≤18 years old) admitted with confirmed Covid-19. Children admitted to the hospital between April 2, 2020 and August 26, 2020, were included. Telephone interview using the International Severe Acute Respiratory and emerging Infection Consortium (ISARIC) Covid-19 Health and Wellbeing paediatric follow-up survey. Persistent symptoms (>5 months) were further categorised by system(s) involved. Findings: 518 of 853 (61%) of eligible children were available for the follow-up assessment and included in the study. Median age was 10.4 years (IQR, 3–15.2) and 270 (52.1%) were girls; median follow-up since hospital discharge was 256 (223–271) days. At the time of the follow-up interview 126 (24.3%) participants reported persistent symptoms among which fatigue (53, 10.7%), sleep disturbance (36, 6.9%,) and sensory problems (29, 5.6%) were the most common. Multiple symptoms were experienced by 44 (8.4%) participants. Risk factors for persistent symptoms were: older age “6–11 years” (odds ratio 2.74 (95% confidence interval 1.37 to 5.75) and “12–18 years” (2.68, 1.41 to 5.4); and a history of allergic diseases (1.67, 1.04 to 2.67). Interpretation: A quarter of children experienced persistent symptoms months after hospitalization with acute covid-19 infection, with almost one in ten experiencing multi-system involvement. Older age and allergic diseases were associated with higher risk of persistent symptoms at follow-up.


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Osmanov, I., Spiridonova, E., Bobkova, P., Gamirova, A., Shikhaleva, A., Andreeva, M., Blyuss, O., El-Taravi, Y., DunnGalvin, A., Comberiati, P., Peroni, D., Apfelbacher, C., Genuneit, J., Mazankova, L., Miroshina, A., Chistyakova, E., Samitova, E., Borzakova, S., Bondarenko, E., Korsunskiy, A., Konova, I., Hanson, S., Carson, G., Sigfrid, L., Scott, J., Greenhawt, M., Whittaker, E., Garralda, E., Swann, O., Buonsenso, D., Nicholls, D., Simpson, F., Jones, C., Semple, M., Warner, J., Vos, T., Olliaro, P. & Munblit, D. 2021, 'Risk factors for long covid in previously hospitalised children using the ISARIC Global follow-up protocol: A prospective cohort study', European Respiratory Journal. https://doi.org/10.1183/13993003.01341-2021

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Last updated: 26 October 2022
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