More than seven months into the coronavirus pandemic, it has become increasingly apparent that many patients with both severe and mild illness do not fully recover. Weeks and months after exposure, these Covid “long-haulers,” as they have been called, continue experiencing a range of symptoms, including exhaustion, dizziness, shortness of breath and cognitive impairments. Children are generally at significantly less risk than older people for serious complications and death from Covid-19, but the long-term impacts of infection on them, if any, have been especially unclear.
Although doctors recognize that a small number of children have suffered a rare inflammatory syndrome shortly after infection, there is little reliable information about how many who get Covid-19 have prolonged complaints like Maggie Flannery. That could change as the proportion of children who are infected rises.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children represented 10.9 percent of reported cases nationwide as of mid-October, up from just 2.2 percent in April.