The use of convalescent plasma for pediatric patients with SARS-CoV-2: A systematic literature review

Transfus Apher Sci. 2021 Apr;60(2):103043. doi: 10.1016/j.transci.2020.103043. Epub 2020 Dec 23.


Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), a severe illness leading to pneumonia, multiorgan failure, and death. With this study, we performed a systematic review of the literature and ongoing clinical trials on convalescent plasma therapy in pediatric patients with COVID-19. The electronic databases Medline PubMed, Scopus, and Web Of Science were searched. Also, clinical trials registries were searched for potentially eligible studies. A total of 90 records were retrieved after duplicate removal. Eight studies were case reports of children treated with convalescent plasma therapy (14 children, age range, 9 weeks to 18 years); 5 children had a chronic disease. During the hospital stay, 5 received drugs (e.g., remdesivir) in addition to convalescent plasma therapy. No convalescent plasma therapy-related adverse events were reported in 5 studies and 3 made no mention of adverse events. Seven studies concluded that convalescent plasma therapy is or could be a useful therapeutic option; one study made no claims. Only 3 of the 13 retrieved trials underway were planned exclusively for children. This is the first systematic review of the literature regarding convalescent plasma therapy for COVID-19 in children. We found insufficient clinical information on the safety and efficacy of convalescent plasma therapy in children. Nevertheless, the positive outcomes of the few case reports published to date suggest that convalescent plasma therapy may be of potential benefit. Further research with well-designed and powered clinical trials is needed.

Keywords: COVID-19 pandemic; Children; Plasma; SARS-CoV-2.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Viral / blood
  • Antibodies, Viral / therapeutic use*
  • COVID-19 / blood
  • COVID-19 / therapy*
  • Child
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunization, Passive
  • Male
  • Plasma*
  • SARS-CoV-2 / metabolism*


  • Antibodies, Viral

Supplementary concepts

  • COVID-19 serotherapy