Over 75,000 children in the state of Michigan have had a confirmed COVID-19 infection. While most children may be asymptomatic or only have mild COVID-19 symptoms, many children may experience persistent symptoms months after initial recovery known as post-COVID syndrome or “Long COVID.” Such patients are also described as “long-haulers.” The NIH is putting extensive attention into trying to understand the biology behind and the treatments for “Long COVID” in children and adults.
Pediatric post-COVID syndrome symptoms
The range of long-term symptoms in children are not well documented, but may mirror those seen in adults, including:
- shortness of breath
- joint pain
- chest pain
- loss of taste and/or smell
Pediatricians at Michigan Medicine C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital are interested in assisting children and families in coping with the long-term effects of COVID-19. A Post-COVID Syndrome Clinic was established to address the needs of these patients and to help with recovery. The Post-COVID Syndrome Clinic can also help assess and treat patients who have recovered from severe COVID or multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C).
Features of the Pediatric Post-COVID Syndrome Clinic include:
- virtual and in-person visits
- assessments of quality of life and ongoing symptoms
- physical examination and treatment of symptoms
- testing that may include pulmonary (lung) function testing, immune testing, chest imaging, or exercise testing
- anticipatory guidance on COVID precautions and return to exercise
- coordination of care with pediatric subspecialties such as pediatric pulmonology (lung), pediatric cardiology (heart), pediatric physical rehabilitation and medicine, pediatric psychology and pediatric otolaryngology when needed
- coordination of care with primary care physicians
- opportunities to participate in research studies on the long-term effects of COVID-19 in children
Referral criteria for the Pediatric Post-COVID Syndrome Clinic
- be under the age of 21
- documented COVID-19 infection by PCR
- new or worsening symptoms that persist more than two months (60 days) after the initial COVID-19 infection
- no other exposures or explanations for the new symptoms
Requested documentation at the time of referral
- Documentation of a positive COVID-19 test result, including test method and date
- Documentation of any symptoms or preexisting conditions (e.g. asthma) prior to COVID-19 infection
- Documentation of any tests, symptoms, or treatments during the acute COVID-19 infection
- Documentation of any tests, symptoms, or treatments after the acute COVID-19 infection
Making an appointment
At this time, a referral is required from your primary care physician or a pediatric subspecialist to make an appointment. This ensures we receive all of the required documentation necessary to schedule a clinic visit.
Referring physicians can contact M-LINE at 800-962-3555.
For more information, please call 734-764-4123.