Tuesday, May 19, 2020


I'm reading the CNN coronavirus updates and I see that a red state wants kids to graduate in person:
In-person graduation ceremonies with gatherings of large groups of people could begin as early as next Friday, South Carolina Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman said.

Spearman, speaking at a reopening task force meeting, said that she and Gov. Henry McMaster felt that "it is a special ceremony; they can be held."
"It is left up to the individual district," she said. "They can do that virtually or in person. And many high schools across the state are having in-person graduation ceremonies limiting the guests to two per senior or sometimes four, depending on the size of the high school graduating class."
This is happening because we think young people aren't particularly likely to get sick from the coronavirus.

Except, as we see from several other stories in the CNN update, the virus does make young people sick:
A Mississippi state official reported Tuesday the first case of a child with multisystem inflammatory syndrome.

The child is from central Mississippi and had tested positive for Covid-19. The child has recovered and been discharged from the hospital, State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs said.


The Virginia Department of Health is reporting the state’s first confirmed case of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) associated with Covid-19.

According to the Department of Health, the child was hospitalized on May 5 and has since been discharged. The child is now recovering at home.

Most children with MIS-C have fever lasting several days and may show symptoms of irritability or decreased activity, abdominal pain without another explanation, diarrhea, vomiting, rash, conjunctivitis, lack of appetite, red or cracked lips, red or bumpy tongue, or swollen hands and feet, the health department said.
These kids are recovering, so this syndrome can't be too bad, right? Although the did need to be hospitalized....

But here's another story in that CNN newsfeed:
Young people who may have multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children, or MIS-C, a troubling complication of Covid-19 infection, need immediate attention and will probably need to be hospitalized, doctors said Tuesday.

Symptoms do not look like the classic symptoms of coronavirus and may mostly include stomach pain and vomiting, along with fever and perhaps a rash, the experts told other doctors on a briefing organized by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

It’s becoming clear that many of the children with the new syndrome have damage to their hearts and need immediate treatment, the experts told the briefing....
And then you turn to this New York Times story and the syndrome starts to seem really alarming.
When a sprinkling of a reddish rash appeared on Jack McMorrow’s hands in mid-April, his father figured the 14-year-old was overusing hand sanitizer....

When Jack’s parents noticed that his eyes looked glossy, they attributed it to late nights of video games and TV.

When he developed a stomachache and didn’t want dinner, “they thought it was because I ate too many cookies or whatever,” said Jack, a ninth grader in Woodside, Queens....

But over the next 10 days, Jack felt increasingly unwell. His parents consulted his pediatricians in video appointments and took him to a weekend urgent care clinic. Then, one morning, he awoke unable to move.

He had a tennis-ball-size lymph node, raging fever, racing heartbeat and dangerously low blood pressure. Pain deluged his body in “a throbbing, stinging rush,” he said.

“You could feel it going through your veins and it was almost like someone injected you with straight-up fire,” he said.

Jack, who was previously healthy, was hospitalized with heart failure that day, in a stark example of the newly discovered severe inflammatory syndrome linked to the coronavirus that has already been identified in about 200 children in the United States and Europe and killed several.
Jack's illness was not mild:
Jack arrived at the children’s hospital so feverish that his father was “washing me down with ice-cold water and it only felt like a tingle,” he said.

His resting heart rate was 165 beats per minute, about twice as high as normal, as his heart struggled to compensate for his alarmingly low blood pressure, which was hampering its ability to circulate blood and supply his vital organs with oxygen and nutrients.

This condition is a form of heart failure called cardiogenic shock, and Jack’s was “pretty severe,” said Dr. Steven Kernie, chief of pediatric critical care medicine at the hospital and Columbia University.

... blood vessels throughout his body were inflamed, a condition called vasculitis, so the vessels’ muscles were “not controlling blood flow as well as they should,” Dr. Kernie said.

Doctors also suspected that the heart was inflamed, known as myocarditis, which in untreated serious cases can cause lasting damage.
Jack nearly died. Three young New Yorkers already have died from this.

You'll be hearing more and more about MIS-C. But your right-wing relatives won't be moved -- they'll conclude that this is an attempt by liberals to regain the totalitarian control they believe we desperately seek at all times, and which they're convinced they wrested from us with their reopening demands.

They'll also seize on a detail noted in one of the CNN stories:
[Experts] believe it’s increasingly clear that Covid-19 is involved, even though many of the children test negative for the virus and never seemed to have had symptoms of infection.
Jack McMorrow from the New York Times story initially tested negative for the virus, then tested positive. We're told:
Jack’s positive coronavirus test was a clue, but others with similar symptoms had negative diagnostic test results.... The doctors then decided to check the other children for evidence of the coronavirus with a different test, one for antibodies, which signal they had an earlier, no-longer-active infection. Most children ended up having either a positive diagnostic or antibody test result.
This nasty virus is clearly doing serious harm to some young people. I hope we don't have to beg half the country to believe that this is a consequence of the pandemic, and that it's a serious problem.

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