COVID-19 collateral harm: residence accidents, baby suicides?

There might be a hyperlink between the unprecedented occasions of COVID-19 and a rise in some accidents in kids, investigators reported.

COVID-19 was declared a pandemic by the World Well being Group (WHO) in March 2020, which sparked a wide-ranging chain of occasions, together with journey bans, stay-at-home orders and a brand new use of telemedicine.

Observational research have urged that the occasions of that 12 months have been related to extra kids:

  • Going to the U.S. Emergency Companies (ED) after swallowing magnets, electronics, and small batteries
  • Presentation to Midwestern Trauma Facilities with a Burn
  • Dying from gun suicide within the Chicago space

“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, households have skilled unprecedented elevated social and monetary strain, and youngsters have been out of college for lengthy intervals of time,” mentioned Christina Georgeades, MD, of Kids’s Wisconsin and Medical Faculty of Wisconsin in Milwaukee. “The onset of the COVID pandemic launched a unprecedented set of occasions with unclear penalties. “

Georgeades and different researchers introduced their findings in summary kind on the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Digital Assembly.

Ingestion of international our bodies

The COVID-19 period noticed no change within the frequency of whole international physique ingestions, however harmful objects have been swallowed extra, in response to nationwide surveillance information.

The incidence of suspected international physique ingestions in kids as much as the age of 17 was not considerably completely different from 2017-2019 (earlier than COVID-19; n = 59,933) to 2020 (interval COVID-19; n = 54,926; P= 0.06). Nonetheless, there have been substantial will increase in:

  • Kids requiring escalation of care because of ingestion
  • Magnets ingestion
  • Electronics ingestions
  • Button cell battery ingestion

These objects are among the many most harmful objects ingested; small rare-earth magnets may cause puncture, whereas button cell batteries may cause loss of life from charge-dependent hydrolysis, reported Elyse Geibel, MD, of the Naval Medical Heart in San Diego.

“The harm fashions described on this assessment, notably with respect to electronics and magnets, present a possibility for focused advocacy and training for sufferers, dad and mom, educators and different caregivers. This could information future pandemic public well being campaigns to extend residence security and forestall future [foreign body ingestions],” she mentioned.

Geibel’s group carried out the retrospective examine utilizing information from the Nationwide Digital Harm Surveillance System masking the interval 2017-2020. They have been unable to seize details about ingestions throughout major care visits, she admitted.


Pediatric burns turned extra frequent within the spring and summer time of 2020, presumably because of accidents attributable to residence fireworks.

In eight stage 1 pediatric trauma facilities, the variety of kids with burns elevated by 32.5% in the course of the implementation of stay-at-home orders (522 in March-September 2020 in comparison with 394 in March-September 2019 , P= 0.03), with the most important peak occurring in July and amongst school-aged kids, in response to Georgeades.

“The disproportionate improve in burns in July could mirror the cancellation {of professional} fireworks exhibits throughout the nation and a rise within the variety of beginner pyrotechnicians experimenting with their very own fireworks,” she mentioned, citing an estimate in response to the place the gross sales of fireworks to shoppers elevated by 200 to 300%. in the course of the summer time of 2020.

For this examine, Georgeades and his colleagues drew on information from the Midwest Pediatric Surgical procedure Consortium.

“In the end, extra research are wanted to focus on kids and households who want further help probably the most throughout these traumatic instances,” she mentioned.

Pediatric firearm deaths

Lastly, a small examine urged a rise in gun suicides whereas gun homicides remained steady amongst Chicago kids in the course of the pandemic.

Pediatric firearm suicides peaked in 2020 (n = 11) in comparison with the earlier 4 years (vary 2-7). Eight of these suicides have been amongst teenagers aged 15 to 17 and three have been amongst kids aged 10 to 14, scoring extra gun suicides on this youthful age group in 2020 than the earlier 4 years mixed, in response to Ashley Wolf, MD, MS, of Rush College Kids’s Hospital in Chicago.

The CDC beforehand reported a 39% improve in emergency room visits for suspected suicide makes an attempt amongst younger folks aged 12 to 17 in 2020 in comparison with 2019.

Then again, the variety of pediatric firearm homicides in 2020 (n = 67) remained the identical as in earlier years (vary 47 to 82). Nearly all of firearm homicides have been amongst Black kids aged 15 to 17, however there was a slight improve in firearm homicides amongst kids aged 1 to 14 (n = 14 vs. earlier vary from 3 to 10).

In Chicago, black adolescent males have been disproportionately affected by gun suicide and gun murder. There have been no bumps within the two varieties of deaths coinciding with town’s stay-at-home order in spring 2020.

Wolf and his colleagues carried out a retrospective assessment of the Cook dinner County Medical Examiner’s information from 2016 to 2020.

  • Nicole Lou is a reporter for MedPage Right this moment, the place she covers present occasions in cardiology and different developments in medication. To observe


Not one of the authors made a disclosure.

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