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Dr. Thomas Kimball breaks down coronavirus related illness, multi-system inflammatory syndrome

NEW ORLEANS —

New Orleans area doctors are concerned about a rare, coronavirus-related condition that has proven deadly for young people.

The multi-system inflammatory syndrome is similar to Kawasaki disease.

In New York, three children have died from the condition, which is believed to follow a mild case of coronavirus. No deaths have been reported in Louisiana.

Dr. Tom Kimball, chief of pediatric cardiology for Children's Hospital New Orleans, said his facility has treated a total of four children. Three are still in the hospital with the youngest being a two-month-old.

"All are doing well at this point," said Kimball.

He said while much is still unknown about the condition, parents should keep an eye out for the symptoms, which include a high-grade fever (102 or higher), a rash and sometimes abdominal pain, diarrhea or vomiting. Kimball said if a child exhibits these symptoms, go to the emergency room.

"That is a harbinger of potentially worse things to come," said Kimball. "The kids can get very sick from this with shock-like syndromes in some kids that necessitate admission to the intensive care unit, placement on I-V medication that supports their blood pressure, and sometimes, they even have to go on the cardiopulmonary bypass machine, temporarily."

Kimball said physicians in New Orleans are sharing data with their colleagues in New York, who are also dealing with the condition.

"(We want) to try to get to the bottom of what's causing this and best treatments," said Kimball.

Over the weekend, the Louisiana Department of Health issued a warning about the condition, which can be read here.