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University Hospitals in Cleveland confirms local case of 'mystery illness' in child linked to COVID-19 to 3News

Four suspected cases are awaiting lab results.

CLEVELAND — University Hospitals in Cleveland has confirmed to 3News that they are treating a confirmed case of a mysterious illness in children that is linked to COVID-19.

3News Senior Health Correspondent Monica Robins reports that UH's Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital has one confirmed case of Pediatric Multi-system Inflammatory Syndrome linked to COVID-19. Four suspected cases are awaiting lab results. Children have come in with fever and another symptom such as abdominal pain, diarrhea, pink eye, or rash.

Last week, New York's state health department first reported dozens of children in the state were hospitalized with multi-system inflammatory syndrome associated with COVID-19. 

At least 85 children in New York have been diagnosed with symptoms similar to Kawasaki disease — a rare inflammatory condition in children — and toxic shock syndrome. Most of them are toddlers and elementary-age children. NBC New York reported there could be as many as 93 cases of children with the illness.

RELATED: 64 children in NY hit by illness possibly linked to COVID-19

The New York state health department noted that in the United Kingdom, a possible link has also been reported between pediatric COVID-19 and serious inflammatory disease.

"The inflammatory syndrome has features which overlap with Kawasaki disease and toxic shock syndrome and may occur days to weeks after acute COVID-19 illness. It can include persistent fever, abdominal symptoms, rash, and even cardiovascular symptoms requiring intensive care," the health department said in a statement.

According to the Mayo Clinic, Kawasaki disease causes swelling in the walls of medium-sized arteries throughout the body. It can affect the coronary arteries which supply blood to the heart. It mainly affects children. While it can be life-threatening, the clinic says it's usually treatable and most children recover without serious problems.

For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems -- including children -- it can cause more severe illness and death. 

3News will continue to follow this developing story as more details become available.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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