COVID-19: Four Paediatric Cases in Malaysia

Int J Infect Dis. 2020 May;94:125-127. doi: 10.1016/j.ijid.2020.03.049. Epub 2020 Apr 15.

Abstract

Objective: This is a brief report of 4 paediatric cases of COVID-19 infection in Malaysia BACKGROUND: COVID-19, a coronavirus, first detected in Wuhan, China has now spread rapidly to over 60 countries and territories around the world, infecting more than 85000 individuals. As the case count amongst children is low, there is need to report COVID-19 in children to better understand the virus and the disease.

Cases: In Malaysia, until end of February 2020, there were four COVID-19 paediatric cases with ages ranging from 20 months to 11 years. All four cases were likely to have contracted the virus in China. The children had no symptoms or mild flu-like illness. The cases were managed symptomatically. None required antiviral therapy.

Discussion: There were 2 major issues regarding the care of infected children. Firstly, the quarantine of an infected child with a parent who tested negative was an ethical dilemma. Secondly, oropharyngeal and nasal swabs in children were at risk of false negative results. These issues have implications for infection control. Consequently, there is a need for clearer guidelines for child quarantine and testing methods in the management of COVID-19 in children.

Keywords: COVID-19; Coronavirus; Epidemiology; Outbreak; Paediatric; epidemic; nCoV.

MeSH terms

  • Betacoronavirus* / isolation & purification
  • COVID-19
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Coronavirus Infections* / virology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Malaysia
  • Male
  • Pandemics*
  • Pneumonia, Viral* / virology
  • SARS-CoV-2