The coronavirus causes symptoms related to a cold. There are very many cold viruses, and luckily we now know that this coronavirus (COVID-19) only lightly effects children, much like other viruses that cause a cold. Most heartchildren can handle a cold or a fever well.
However, there is always a certain group of heartchildren that is more vulnerable to the flu and/or respiratory diseases. The group of vulnerable heartchildren consists of:
- Children with a single ventricle heart / Fontan circulation
- Children younger than 1 years old, who still need surgery or cardiac catheterization (like VSD, AVSD, Tetralogy of Fallot)
- Children with cyanosis (with saturation continuously under 85%)
- Children with cardiomyopathy and/or heart failure (for which they have medication)
- Children with pulmonary hypertension
- Children who have had a heart transplant
- Children who, besides their heart defect, also suffer from severe lung and/or kidney problems.
It is always essential to keep a close eye on them when they have a cold or are sick. This often blows over on its own, just like this coronavirus. But if their cold becomes more severe or they experience tightness in their chest, their pediatric cardiologist should be contacted. For every heartchild and especially every child in the group listed above, the advice is to adhere to the guidelines stated by the RIVM, by, for instance, washing your hands well and maintaining 1.5 meters distance between yourself and others.