A rare Covid-19 complication was reported in children. Now, it's showing up in adults.
...It was a rash that tipped Dr. Alisa Femia off.
Femia, director of inpatient dermatology at NYU Langone Health in New York City, was looking at a patient's chart, which included several photos of the 45-year-old man who had, in recent weeks, cared for his wife while she was sick with Covid-19. The man had dusky-red circular patches on the palms of his hands and the soles of his feet. His eyes were pink, and his lips were extremely chapped.
His body was erupting with the kind of extreme inflammation noted almost exclusively in children at the time.
"Before I even saw the patient," Femia recalled, "I said: 'This hasn't been reported yet. This must be MIS-A.'"
MIS-A stands for "multi-system inflammatory syndrome in adults." When the condition was identified in children this spring, it was named MIS-C, with the C standing for "children."...
MIS-A's "true prevalence is unknown," Morris said. "We have to get physicians realizing that. It may be rare, but we don't know. It might be more common than we think."
Part of the problem is that the virus has been circulating among humans for less than a year. Doctors worldwide are still learning about how SARS-CoV-2 acts in patients.
Typically, severely ill Covid-19 patients tend to arrive at the hospital because they're having trouble breathing. That hasn't been the case with MIS-A.
Many MIS-A patients report fevers, chest pain or other heart problems, diarrhea or other gastrointestinal issues " but not shortness of breath. And diagnostic tests for Covid-19 tend to be negative.
Instead, patients will test positive for Covid-19 antibodies, meaning they were infected two to six weeks previously, even if they never had symptoms....