Kawasaki disease, also known as kawasaki syndrome, is an illness that causes high fever, rashes on the hands and feet, conjunctivitis, mucous membrane of the mouth, gingivitis and swollen neck glands, mostly in young children. The cause of kawasaki disease is unknown, but experts believe it is a virus because of the characteristics of many of the symptoms it causes. It is not a contagious disease and therefore, is unlikely that virus is the only cause of it.
Studies suggests that kawasaki disease may be caused by an abnormal reaction to some common virus that does not bother many people. A few researches called the disease an autoimmune disorder where the body's immune system attacks its own healthy tissues as if they were a pathogen. By far, there is no clear evidence on any cause for kawasaki disease.
Kawasaki disease is one of the leading causes of acquired heart disease in children. Owing to limited knowledge, the disease often goes undetected in many children. Instead, damage to the heart is allowed to perpetuate and harm the child.
The following may be considered to be possible risk factors for kawasaki disease:
One of the characteristics of kawasaki disease is fever that lasts for over 5 days. Even after treatment with standard childhood fever medicines, the fever tends to persist. Affected children may have red eyes, red lips and redness on the palms of their hands and soles of their feet all of which are indications of inflamed blood vessels. Children with these symptoms are extremely uncomfortable and irritable.
Kawasaki disease can't be prevented, though early diagnosis and treatment helps to reduce the risk of kawasaki disease affecting the coronary arteries which may cause serious complications. With appropriate treatment, most children who have the disease usually recover within weeks of getting the symptoms. If the disease attacks children's coronary arteries, they need long-term care and treatment.
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