Children’s hospitals in Dallas and Denver are warning about an uptick in children with heart attacks and stroke, and the potential for complications.
The childrens hospitals said they received a record number of calls about heart attacks this week, most in the first six months of this year.
And the number of patients with a heart condition at Dallas Children’s has increased nearly 50 percent, from 855 in the spring of last year to more than 1,200 in the fall of 2017.
“Our hearts are broken for the families who have lost loved ones and children, who are also struggling with the onset of this devastating disease,” said Dr. Mary Kuehne, director of pediatric cardiac surgery at the Children’s hospital of Dallas.
“Our hearts go out to them and their families.”
The hospitals said the number is a record high for a one-year period.
“As our nation moves into a new era of increased awareness and awareness of the impact of COVID-19 and the associated medical complications, the hospital is taking additional steps to prevent the spread of the virus,” the hospital said in a statement.
“We are working with partners to improve patient access and care and to develop protocols and plans to protect our patients and staff.”
The hospital is asking families to check in weekly with their loved ones to make sure the children have enough fluids and to keep their temperature at or below 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
The hospital said it is also testing children with respiratory illness, including coughs, to ensure they are not breathing through their nose.
The hospital says it is taking the steps it says are necessary to reduce the risk of a new infection.
It has set up a website and Facebook page to share tips and advice about keeping children healthy.
“We will continue to monitor the situation to keep our staff and our patients safe,” said hospital spokeswoman Angela Tardif.