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Safety and Wellness

COVID-19 and Multi-System Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C)


Parents likely have questions about how COVID-19 affects their child, especially as new information continues to emerge. The medical staff at Gillette Children's is actively monitoring COVID-19 and the effects on children, especially as more information is reported about a condition occurring in children in the United States that may be related to COVID-19.

The condition, now known as multi-system inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), seems to have features like another pediatric condition called Kawasaki disease, but it can also present more severe like toxic shock syndrome. There are cases reported with active or past COVID-19, but the full extent of the connection is not clear.

Contact your primary care provider right away if your child seems ill, has a fever with temperature over 100 degrees for more than 24 hours, and any of the following symptoms that are associated with this newly described syndrome:  

  • Unexplained abdominal pain, diarrhea or vomiting.
  • Red, dry and cracked lips.
  • Rash or changes in skin color.
  • Swollen hands or feet.
  • Irritable mood, confusion or extreme sleepiness​.

“While there remain very few reports of MIS-C, it is troubling to consider how this condition could affect the children and families we serve, especially at a time that is already so difficult for families,” says Ketzela Marsh, MD, an infectious disease specialist at Gillette.

Currently, there are no confirmed cases of MIS-C in Minnesota, but Gillette’s medical staff will continue to monitor the situation as we learn more about the condition. The main message for parents right now is to trust their instincts and not to hesitate to seek care if your child is ill. 

“As parents, you know your child best. If you think something seems abnormal or amiss, it’s important to seek medical care quickly for early intervention,” Marsh says. “We know that people may be feeling wary about going into clinical spaces right now, but families should not delay necessary medical care.”

While the world around us is changing rapidly, Gillette remains committed to serving our patients and families. Please contact Gillette if you have questions about your child’s health.