San Antonio pediatrics professor explains how COVID-19 Delta variant is impacting children

SAN ANTONIO – The COVID-19 Delta variant is a game-changer for the pandemic, and families need to reshape how they see the threat to children, San Antonio doctors say.

The Delta variant spreads faster and is more aggressive than the original novel coronavirus, medical experts say.

Dr. Alvaro Moreira, an assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of Texas Health San Antonio, says parents need to rethink how they see the threat of the virus in children. New data is emerging as time passes, and researchers and doctors learn more about the after-effects of the virus on children, Moreira says.

“There are many reports now that even in children who are COVID-19 positive, but never had any symptoms, can develop these devastating presentations,” Moreira said.

The pediatrics professor says studies show that children can manifest cough, runny nose, fever, a persistent headache, fatigue or even brain fog weeks after recovering.

Moreira pointed to a study in the UK by The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health released earlier this month involving 1,700 children, where 5% of the kids displayed those persistent symptoms.

Moreira says he’s seen a rise in babies with COVID-19 positive mothers who are born prematurely. Some of those babies are also diagnosed at times with MIS-Neonate. Those children will need to be intubated after birth.

Christus Health reports that, at The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio, 10% of hospital beds are being occupied by COVID-19 patients.

Methodist Children’s Hospital reports it has 12 pediatric COVID-19 patients in its facility as of Wednesday.

Moreira says only time will reveal the lifelong effects these children who survive COVID-19 will face.


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Patty Santos joined the KSAT 12 News team in July 2017. She has a proven track record of reporting on hard-hitting news that affects the community.