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CDC says coronavirus deaths in children echo the toll in adults



A detailed look at deaths from COVID-19 in children and young adults in the United States shows that they reflect patterns seen in older patients.

The report, released Tuesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, examined 121 coronavirus-related deaths between Feb. 12 and July 31 in people under the age of 21.

Like older Americans, many of them had at least one disease before becoming infected, such as lung problems such as asthma, obesity, heart problems, or developmental conditions.

Like older adults, deaths among younger people were also more common for those of certain racial and ethnic groups. The CDC found that among the 1

21 casualties, 54 were Latino, 35 were black, and 17 were white.

“It’s really quite amazing,” said Dr. Andrew Pavia, an expert in pediatric infectious diseases at the University of Utah, who did not participate in the CDC study. “It’s similar to what we see in adults,” and it can reflect many things, including the fact that many essential workers who have to go to work are black and Latino parents, he said.

The total number of young deaths is relatively small, accounting for approximately 0.08% of all U.S. deaths from COVID-19 reported to CDC during the study period. College-aged children and adults make up 26% of the American population.

Fifteen of the deaths were related to a rare condition called multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children, which can cause swelling and heart problems.

The report also found that nearly two-thirds of deaths were in men and that deaths increased with age. There were 71 deaths among children under 17, including a dozen babies. The remaining 50 deaths occurred in adults aged 18 to 20 years.

Scientists are still trying to understand why serious illnesses seem to be more common as children get older. One theory is that young children have fewer ACE2 receptors on the surfaces of the airways that the coronavirus is able to adhere to, Pavia said. Another is that children may be less prone to a dangerous overreaction of the immune system to the coronavirus, he said.

To date, the number of COVID-19s in children is lower than the number of pediatric flu deaths reported to the CDC during a typical flu season, which has been about 130 in recent years. But comparing the two things is difficult for several reasons, including those that most schools were not open during the spring due to the pandemic.




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