There are simple diseases that affect only one part of the body, but others are more complex and can present with very varied symptoms such as fever, red eyes, swelling of the tongue and lips and a skin rash, as occurs in the disease of Kawasaki, but what is really thekawasaki disease? What are your symptoms and treatment to follow?
The kawasaki disease it is a vasculitis. Perhaps this term will not solve your doubts, but I will tell you that it is due to an inflammation of the blood vessels, hence its danger, since it affects the small and medium arteries and can damage the arteries that supply the heart.
Its exact cause is unknown, although it is speculated that an infectious agent may trigger an important inflammatory response, as a result of which the aforementioned vessels are affected. It is possible that there is an individual genetic factor that is related to the disease, since to date it is especially frequent in children of Asian origin and in children who have had siblings who have passed it.
Although it is true that, as is well known and how it has happened with other diseases such as coronavirus, its spread due to globalization is very rapid and it is believed that it may have reached some countries in Europe, Latin America and also the United States.
According to Spanish Association of Pediatrics, Kawasaki disease is more common in children under the age of five, affecting mostly young children between 18 and 36 months of age. On the other hand, this pathology cannot be prevented, although it can be controlled, so it is very important that parents are attentive to possible symptoms.
From a clinical point of view and, according to Alfonso Delgado Rubio in his report 'Kawasaki Disease', for the Spanish Pediatric Association, the most common symptoms are:
- Irritability and general malaise
- Abdominal and joint pain
- Fever of several days of evolution, up to five days
- Swelling of the lymph nodes in the neck
- Mouth involvement (red, chapped and fissured lips, branched tongue)
- Hands and feet involvement (edema and desquamation)
- Spots on the skin
- Conjunctival injection without discharge (red eyes, but no blemishes)
It is important to know that its diagnosis is made based on the fulfillment of a series of clinical criteria, and that a blood test and an ultrasound of the heart (echocardiography) must always be done. And that it does not affect all children the same, for example, in infants their symptoms are less clear, hence, if you have any questions, you should go to the pediatrician.
All these symptoms described above plus some less common ones make, at first, Kawasaki disease can be confused with others such as coronavirus or covid, measles, scarlet fever or mononucleosis.
There has been talk of a possible covid relationship with Kawasaki, but according to different experts there is no such relationship and the only coincidence demonstrated to date is geographic and temporalIn other words, as a result of the pandemic, new cases of Kawasaki disease have begun to be discovered.
For all this the best thing is that at the slightest symptom and if these remain over time, the mother or father go to the pediatrician to examine the child, reviewing the vaccination schedule, doing different tests and making a clinical basis to rule out possible pathologies.
Their treatment must be done in consultation and only in the most serious cases will the child be admitted to hospital. This treatment consists of the administration of immunoglobulins (they make fever and poor general condition disappear, and prevent the development of aneurysms in the heart vessels) and acetylsalicylic acid (it has anti-inflammatory and antiplatelet effect).
The prognosis is usually very good, especially if treatment is started in the first seven or ten days of evolution. It will be recommended that the child rest at home for two or three weeks and, when the fever subsides, about 72 hours to prevent.
After the treatment, the child may notice that the skin on the hands and feet falls off for the next two weeks, but there is no need to worry because it is renewed.
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