University of Hertfordshire


  • Sechenov StopCOVID Research Team
  • Ismail M Osmanov
  • Ekaterina Spiridonova
  • Polina Bobkova
  • Aysylu Gamirova
  • Anastasia Shikhaleva
  • Margarita Andreeva
  • Oleg Blyuss
  • Yasmin El-Taravi
  • Audrey DunnGalvin
  • Pasquale Comberiati
  • Diego G Peroni
  • Christian Apfelbacher
  • Jon Genuneit
  • Lyudmila Mazankova
  • Alexandra Miroshina
  • Evgeniya Chistyakova
  • Elmira Samitova
  • Svetlana Borzakova
  • Elena Bondarenko
  • Anatoliy A Korsunskiy
  • Irina Konova
  • Sarah Wulf Hanson
  • Gail Carson
  • Louise Sigfrid
  • Janet T Scott
  • Matthew Greenhawt
  • Elizabeth A Whittaker
  • Elena Garralda
  • Olivia Swann
  • Danilo Buonsenso
  • Dasha E Nicholls
  • Frances Simpson
  • Christina Jones
  • Malcolm G Semple
  • John O Warner
  • Theo Vos
  • Piero Olliaro
  • Daniel Munblit
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Original languageEnglish
Number of pages55
JournalEuropean Respiratory Journal
Early online date1 Jul 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 1 Jul 2021


BACKGROUND: The long-term sequelae of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in children remain poorly characterised. This study aimed to assess long-term outcomes in children previously hospitalised with Covid-19 and associated risk factors.

METHODS: This is a prospective cohort study of children (≤18 years old) admitted with confirmed Covid-19. Children admitted to the hospital between April 2, 2020 and August 26, 2020, were included. Telephone interview using the International Severe Acute Respiratory and emerging Infection Consortium (ISARIC) Covid-19 Health and Wellbeing paediatric follow-up survey. Persistent symptoms (>5 months) were further categorised by system(s) involved.

FINDINGS: 518 of 853 (61%) of eligible children were available for the follow-up assessment and included in the study. Median age was 10.4 years (IQR, 3-15.2) and 270 (52.1%) were girls; median follow-up since hospital discharge was 256 (223-271) days. At the time of the follow-up interview 126 (24.3%) participants reported persistent symptoms among which fatigue (53, 10.7%), sleep disturbance (36, 6.9%,) and sensory problems (29, 5.6%) were the most common. Multiple symptoms were experienced by 44 (8.4%) participants. Risk factors for persistent symptoms were: older age "6-11 years" (odds ratio 2.74 (95% confidence interval 1.37 to 5.75) and "12-18 years" (2.68, 1.41 to 5.4); and a history of allergic diseases (1.67, 1.04 to 2.67).

INTERPRETATION: A quarter of children experienced persistent symptoms months after hospitalization with acute covid-19 infection, with almost one in ten experiencing multi-system involvement. Older age and allergic diseases were associated with higher risk of persistent symptoms at follow-up.


© The authors 2021. This version is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Licence 4.0.

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