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Virus Causes Myocarditis in Kids

The American Heart Association said that Myocarditis is due to rare occurrences in mRNA COVID-19 vaccine recipients, viruses that are the most common cause of the condition in children. While many cases resolve on their own, a statement from the group, which was published in Circulation, addressed treatment guidelines in recovering patients.

Myocarditis, which along with pericarditis and endocarditis is one of the main types of heart inflammation, can temporarily or permanently weaken the heart muscle and the heart’s electrical system. It could impact the heart pumps. In the U.S., approximately 10 to 20 per 100,000 people are diagnosed with it each year, with children accounting for 1 to 2 per 100,000 incidents.

The American Heart Association said that the Signs and symptoms may present as fatigue, shortness of breath, fever, chest pain and palpitations, but they can range in children from minimal to showing signs of heart failure, life-threatening arrhythmias or cardiogenic shock. In patients with suspected Myocarditis, diagnosing the condition could include non-invasive testing or blood screening to measure for elevated cardiac enzymes, or an echocardiogram or an MRI. Electrocardiography can also assess heart rhythm and show signs of injury to the heart or signs of pericarditis as well.

Previously, biopsies were usually taken, which would also indicate if a virus was present. Acute Myocarditis should be monitored closely, possibly in an inpatient setting as it can deteriorate rapidly, the AHA advised, and antiviral therapy should be considered if an acute viral infection is found.This could be secondary to systemic autoimmune diseases and is associated with rheumatic fever or Kawasaki disease, and possibly COVID-19-linked multisystem inflammatory syndrome.

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