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SARS-CoV-2 Infections in Icelandic Children : Close Follow-up of All Confirmed Cases in a Nationwide Study

SARS-CoV-2 Infections in Icelandic Children : Close Follow-up of All Confirmed Cases in a Nationwide Study


Title: SARS-CoV-2 Infections in Icelandic Children : Close Follow-up of All Confirmed Cases in a Nationwide Study
Author: Thors, Valtýr Stefánsson
Björnsdóttir, Kristín
Löve, Þorvarður Jón   orcid.org/0000-0002-2680-6120
Haraldsson, Ásgeir
Date: 2022-07-08
Language: English
Scope: 6
University/Institute: University of Iceland
Department: Faculty of Medicine
Women's and Childrens's Services
Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery
Other departments
Series: Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal; 41(10)
ISSN: 0891-3668
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1097/INF.0000000000003626
Subject: Barnalæknisfræði; Gigtarlæknisfræði; children; COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; source of infection; symptom severity; COVID-19/epidemiology; Pandemics; Follow-Up Studies; Humans; Adolescent; Adult; Iceland/epidemiology; Microbiology (medical); Infectious Diseases; Pediatrics, Perinatology and Child Health
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11815/3846

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Citation:

Thors , V S , Björnsdóttir , K , Löve , Þ J & Haraldsson , Á 2022 , ' SARS-CoV-2 Infections in Icelandic Children : Close Follow-up of All Confirmed Cases in a Nationwide Study ' , Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal , vol. 41 , no. 10 , pp. 835-840 . https://doi.org/10.1097/INF.0000000000003626

Abstract:

Introduction: Children are less likely to acquire SARS-CoV-2 infections than adults and when infected, usually have milder disease. True infection and complication rates are, however, difficult to ascertain. In Iceland, a strict test, trace and isolate policy was maintained from the start of the pandemic and offers more accurate information of the number of truly infected children in a nationwide study. Material and methods: All children with positive PCR for SARS-CoV-2 infections from February 28, 2020 to August 31, 2021 were followed up through telephone consultations for at least 14 days and their symptoms were registered. Symptom severity and duration were categorized based on age groups and the source of infection was registered. Results: A total of 1749 children were infected with SARS-CoV-2 in 3 waves of infections. All waves had similar disease severity whereas the incidence was 5-fold higher in the third wave (3.5 vs. 0.73/1000 children/month). No children had severe symptoms, 81 (4.6%) had moderate symptoms, 1287 (73.9%) had mild and 374 (21.5%) were asymptomatic. Symptoms from upper (n = 839, 48%) and lower respiratory tract (n = 744, 43%) were most common. Median duration of symptoms was 5 days and adolescents had a higher risk of prolonged duration [OR:1.84 (1.39-2.43)]. Nineteen (1.1%) children needed medical attention, but no child was hospitalized. The source of infection was a household member in 65% of cases. Discussion: During the first 3 waves of the pandemic, SARS-CoV-2 infections in Icelandic children were mild and none were hospitalized. The most common symptoms were respiratory symptoms followed by fever, headache and tiredness. This study helps shed light on true complication rates of children with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection.

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Publisher Copyright: © 2022 Lippincott Williams and Wilkins. All rights reserved. Copyright © 2022 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.

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