Doctors at Intermountain Primary Children’s Hospital are seeing several young patients with the multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children, or MIS-C, a severe complication from COVID-19.

But a pediatric cardiologist at Primary Children’s is co-leading the nation’s first longitudinal study to understand how MIS-C is affecting children long-term – and find the best way to detect and treat children with MIS-C.

MIS-C is a rare, extreme immune response to COVID-19, and can cause severe illness involving the heart, lungs, blood, kidneys, or brain. Children with MIS-C are hospitalized and often require intensive care. MIS-C also has disproportionately affected Black and Latinx children.

To learn more about MIS-C’s long-term effects on children, Dr. Dongngan Truong, University of Utah Health and Intermountain Primary Children’s Hospital, is co-leading the MUSIC study – short for Long-Term Outcomes after the Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome In Children. The study is co-led by Dr. Jane Newburger of Boston Children’s Hospital in collaboration with the Pediatric Heart Network, a pediatric cardiology research consortium of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

The MUSIC study is the first to examine how MIS-C affects the anatomy and ventricular function of the heart over time. This data will help researchers better understand the disease, and be able to more quickly detect, treat children with MIS-C.   

“There are no known risk factors at this point that would make some kids with COVID-19 develop MIS-C and others not,” Dr. Truong said. “That’s where research studies like MUSIC are going to play an important role.”

The MUSIC study is part of a comprehensive Department of Health and Human Services and NIH strategy to understand MIS-C and pediatric COVID-19 as quickly as possible.  

The study is enrolling about 600 children from the United States and Canada through the Pediatric Heart Network, a pediatric research consortium created and funded by the NIH’s National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Study participants are children who have been diagnosed with MIS-C and recovered, and who will become infected over the next two years.

The study will be conducted in more than 30 academic institutions across the United States and Canada.   

For more information about Intermountain Primary Children’s Hospital visit their website.

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