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When children and adolescents develop Covid-19 symptoms, they usually do not last for too long.
According to a British study, those affected between the ages of 5 and 17 were symptom-free again after six days on average.
The basis of the investigation were symptoms registered by parents or other guardians, which were reported via an app after a positive test.
The analysis included the disease progression of 1,734 children and adolescents who tested positive for the coronavirus and showed symptoms of the disease.
On average, the sick children had three symptoms, according to the specialist magazine "The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health".
Gradients with mild symptoms are also common.
The following complaints were particularly common in the British study:
suffered 62 percent of children and adolescents.
hit 55 percent.
Among the younger (5 to 11 years), 44 percent had a
, 36 percent had a
and 28 percent had a
Among the elderly (12 to 17 years old) 51 percent had a sore throat, 48 percent lost their sense of smell (
), 35 percent had a
and 26 percent had a persistent
For the duration of the complaints, the work provides the following:
Younger children were sick for a median of five days,
older ones a little longer - a median of seven days.
4.4 percent had symptoms for four weeks or longer, with a median of two symptoms, most often they suffered from exhaustion.
The proportion of adolescents who still felt symptoms after more than four weeks was, at 5.1 percent, slightly higher among the older than among the younger ones (3.1 percent).
After eight weeks, fewer than two percent of the children and adolescents still showed symptoms.
"It is reassuring that the number of children who have long suffered from Covid-19 symptoms is very low," main author Emma Duncan of King's College London is quoted in a "Lancet" message.
“Even so, a small group of children with Covid-19 have had a long illness.
Our study confirms the experiences of these children and their families. "
The study does not provide any assessment of the delta variant
The team of authors admits that the study’s weakness was that the symptoms could not be checked or compared.
Thus, the parents' subjective assessment plays a major role.
There was no medical assessment of the reported complaints or a comparison with patient files.
The researchers also state that the proportion of children with long-term symptoms in the study is lower than in the official data from the British government from April.
This could be due to the fact that the Office of Statistics defined the end of Covid-19 differently than the scientists in their work and that the symptoms were queried in different ways.
The investigation period ran until the end of February.
It is therefore unclear whether the results can be transferred to the delta variant of the coronavirus.
Liz Whittaker, a pediatric infectiologist at Imperial College London and not involved in the study, sees the study as a confirmation of what pediatricians see in clinical practice.
"The study is reassuring for the majority of children and adolescents who develop Sars-CoV-2 infection," she says.
It is important that the small group of children with persistent symptoms have timely access to medical examinations.
“We encourage families, teachers, general practitioners, and paediatricians to recognize and support these young people.
Further research into the mechanisms, diagnostics and processes is urgently required, ”said Whittaker.
wbr / dpa