State investigating more than 100 cases of inflammatory illness affecting children
Gov. Andrew Cuomo says more than 100 cases of pediatric inflammatory multisystem syndrome, or PIMS, are being investigated in New York.
"Sixty percent of these children tested positive for the COVID virus. Forty percent tested positive for the antibodies," Cuomo said.
Three children in the state have died from PIMS.
The governor added that the children are predominantly between the ages of 5 and 14, and are from all races.
Dr. Leonard Krilov is the chief of pediatric infectious diseases a NYU Winthrop, where he says they've seen two children with PIMS.
"It may be, if anything, an over exuberant response of the immune system. Then, when you make too much of a good thing attacks it's own tissue," said Krilov.
While Krilov says it does have some similar symptoms to the Kawasaki disease - high fever, rash, inflammation of the blood vessels - PIMS has additional, more serious symptoms such as abdominal pain and inflammation of the kidneys and heart muscle.
Officials say 70% of those with PIMS went to the ICU. Krilov says it can be serious but it is also rare. His message to parents is not to panic.
"If your child has been exposed to someone who had COVID, even if it was several weeks ago, that is a special alert in this situation," Krilov said.
Cuomo says the Department of Health will be holding a webinar Thursday for all health care providers to discuss symptoms, testing and care.