Kawasaki disease is a disease of blood vessels and lymph nodes that appear in children. It affects boys more than girls. Its symptoms include high fever, sore throat, swelling of feet, hands and red eyes. Its exact causes are not known. It is not a life-threatening illness and it lasts up to 2 weeks or more. Children recover from this disease in 10-14 days with medicines without any complications. In rare cases, this disease may cause heart ailments and may lead to heart attacks in later life. It is advised monitoring of the heart through ECG in every one to two years to prevent such heart complications.
Can A Child Get Kawasaki Disease Twice?
Most patients with Kawasaki disease improve within a few days of treatment without any significant problem. If it is left untreated, this disease can cause heart complications. Kawasaki disease can appear twice in some children. However, it is very rare. It occurs in only 3% of all cases of Kawasaki disease. (1)
Kawasaki disease (KD) is an inflammatory disease of lymph nodes, arteries, veins, and capillaries. It affects the skin, linings of mouth, nose, and throat. It affects the blood vessels the most. It affects mostly children and teenagers. It is one of the leading cause of heart problems in children. It is not a serious disease and it can be completely cured if treated in the early stages. If it is left untreated or neglected, the disease can cause serious affections of the heart.
Kawasaki disease is also called Kawasaki syndrome or mucocutaneous lymph node syndrome. It was first noticed by Tomisaku Kawasaki in the year 1967. However, it existed for a long time. It develops more commonly in boys than in girls. It affects mostly children under the age of 5 years. However, it can affect children of any age group. It can develop in any race. However, according to Kawasaki disease foundation, kawasaki disease is more commonly seen in children that belong to Asian and Pacific Island descent.
Kawasaki Disease Causes
It is not known how Kawasaki disease is caused. This disease occurs mostly as localized outbreaks in the late winter or early spring season. It is not considered a contagious disease. It is supposed that this disease appears due to an infectious agent like a virus or bacteria or environmental factors like irritants or chemicals. However, no bacteria or virus is identified until today. It may appear due to the activity of abnormal immune system in our body. However, it is not proved by any research study. Scientists assume that the disease is caused by genetic and environmental factors. It is also found in many studies that siblings of affected child develop this disease. It affects boys more than girls.
Kawasaki Disease Symptoms
The symptoms and signs develop in two phases. In the early stages, the symptoms last for 10 days to 14 days after the start of the symptoms. Its symptoms include –
- High fever above 101 that last for 5 days or more.
- A rash that appear on the chest, legs, genitals, groin, fingers, and toes.
- Red eyes
- Swelling and redness in the hands and sole of the feet. Swelling is followed by sloughing of skin.
- Enlargement of glands in the neck
- Irritation in the throat, lips, and mouth
- Strawberry tongue marked by the swollen and bright red tongue
- Pain in the joint
- Stomach problems like diarrhea or vomiting
The late-stage starts after 14 days of the symptoms. In this stage, the symptoms that appear are:
Kawasaki disease is a disease of blood vessels and lymph nodes that develop mostly in young children. In rare cases, this disease may lead to serious heart illness. It rarely reoccurs in children rarely, children suffer from this disease twice.