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New York investigating childrens’ deaths as COVID-19 related

At least 73 children in New York have been diagnosed with symptoms that health experts are looking into as COVID-19 related. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
At least 73 children in New York have been diagnosed with symptoms that health experts are looking into as COVID-19 related. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan) (Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

ALBANY, N.Y. – Three children have died in New York state from a possible complication from the coronavirus involving swollen blood vessels and heart problems, New York governor Andrew Cuomo said during his daily briefing Sunday.

At least 73 children in New York have been diagnosed with symptoms similar to Kawasaki disease — a rare inflammatory condition in children — and toxic shock syndrome. Most of them are toddlers and elementary-age children.

Cuomo announced two more deaths a day after discussing the death of a 5-year-old boy Thursday at a New York City hospital. A 7-year old in Westchester County and a teenager in Suffolk County on Long Island also died. There is no proof that the virus causes the mysterious syndrome.

New York is helping develop national criteria for identifying and responding to the syndrome at the request of the Centers for Disease Control, Cuomo said.

Children elsewhere in the U.S. have also been hospitalized with the condition, which was also seen in Europe.

Doctors still believe that most children with COVID-19 develop only mild illness.

At least 3,000 U.S. children are diagnosed with Kawasaki disease each year. It is most common in children younger than 6 and in boys.

Symptoms include prolonged fever, severe abdominal pain and trouble breathing.

Keep in mind that so far, infections in children have been less common and there is no evidence that children are more susceptible to this virus. The CDC has answers to many questions about the coronavirus (COVID-19) and children.