A Teenager’s Medical Mystery

From the earliest days of the coronavirus outbreak, health officials believed that it was largely sparing children and teenagers. But the rise of a mysterious inflammatory syndrome — with symptoms ranging from rashes to heart failure — in children testing positive for the virus is challenging that belief. Guest: Pam Belluck, a health and science writer for The New York Times, spoke with Jack McMorrow, 14, and his parents in Queens about his experience contracting the coronavirus. For more information on today’s episode, visit nytimes.com/thedaily 

Background reading: 

  • “If I send you home today, you’ll be dead by tomorrow.” This is what Jack heard after learning he had a mysterious illness connected to the coronavirus in children. “I would say that scared me to death but it more like scared me to life.”
  • The new syndrome has been compared to a rare childhood illness called Kawasaki disease. But doctors have learned that it affects the heart differently and is appearing mostly in school-age children, rather than infants and toddlers.