Ocular manifestations and outcomes in children with confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), relevant affecting factors, and differences in ocular disease between children and adults have yet to be fully understood.
To investigate ocular manifestations and clinical characteristics of children with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19.
Design, Setting, and Participants
This cross-sectional study was conducted at Wuhan Children's Hospital in Wuhan, China. Children with COVID-19 confirmed by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus disease 2 nucleic acid tests of upper respiratory tract specimens between January 26 and March 18, 2020, were included.
Main Outcomes and Measures
Onset clinical symptoms and duration, ocular symptoms, and needs for medication.
A total of 216 pediatric patients were included, among whom 134 (62%) were boys, with a median (interquartile range) age of 7.25 (2.6-11.6) years. Based on the exposure history, 193 children (89.4%) had a confirmed (173 [80.1%]) or suspected (20 [9.3%]) family member with COVID-19 infection. The most common symptoms among symptomatic children were fever (81 [37.5%]) and cough (79 [36.6%]). Of 216 children, 93 (43.1%) had no systemic or respiratory symptoms. All children with mild (101 [46.8%]) or moderate (115 [53.2%]) symptoms recovered without reported death. Forty-nine children (22.7%) showed various ocular manifestations, of which 9 had ocular complaints being the initial manifestations of COVID-19. The common ocular manifestations were conjunctival discharge (27 [55.1%]), eye rubbing (19 [38.8%]), and conjunctival congestion (5 [10.2%]). Children with systemic symptoms (29.3% vs 14.0%; difference, 15.3%; 95% CI, 9.8%-20.7%; P = .008) or with cough (31.6% vs 17.5%; difference, 14.1%; 95% CI, 8.0%-20.3%; P = .02) were more likely to develop ocular symptoms. Ocular symptoms were typically mild, and children recovered or improved.
Conclusions and Relevance
In this cross-sectional study, children hospitalized with COVID-19 in Wuhan, China, presented with a series of onset symptoms including fever, cough, and ocular manifestations, such as conjunctival discharge, eye rubbing, and conjunctival congestion. Patients' systemic clinical symptoms or cough were associated with ocular symptoms. Ocular symptoms recovered or improved eventually.