About Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C)

Disease Overview 

Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) is a condition where different body parts can become inflamed, including the heart, lungs, kidneys, brain, skin, eyes, or gastrointestinal organs. Children with MIS-C may have a fever and various symptoms, including abdominal (gut) pain, vomiting, diarrhea, neck pain, rash, bloodshot eyes, or feeling extra tired. We do not yet know what causes MIS-C. However, many children with MIS-C had the virus that causes COVID-19, or had been around someone with COVID-19. MIS-C can be serious, even deadly, but most children who were diagnosed with this condition have gotten better with medical care.    

Symptoms 

Contact your child’s doctor, nurse, or clinic right away if your child is showing symptoms of MIS-C or symptoms of COVID-19. Seek emergency care right away if your child is showing any of these emergency warning signs or other concerning signs: 

  • Trouble breathing 
  • Pain or pressure in the chest that does not go away 
  • New confusion 
  • Inability to wake or stay awake 
  • Pale, gray, or blue-colored skin, lips, or nail beds, depending on skin tone 
  • Severe abdominal pain 

Call 911 or call ahead to your local emergency facility: Notify the operator that you are seeking care for someone who has or may have COVID-19. 

Causes 

We do not yet know what causes MIS-C. However, many children with MIS-C had the virus that causes COVID-19, or had been around someone with COVID-19.  MIS-C can occur weeks after COVID-19 and even if the child or family did not know the child had COVID-19.   

 We don’t know why some children have gotten sick with MIS-C and others have not. We also do not know if children with certain health conditions are more likely to get MIS-C.  

Prevention 

The best way you can protect your child is by taking steps to prevent your child and the entire household from getting the virus that causes COVID-19. Vaccination, face coverings, hand hygiene, and physical distancing are the best ways to prevent COVID-19. Children with underlying medical conditions can be at higher risk for poor outcomes of COVID-19, making prevention measures even more important.  

Visit https://www.dph.georgia.gov for more information on COVID-19 prevention. 

Additional Resources 

Page last updated 08/26/2021