BEIJING, Sept. 21 (Xinhua) -- Stomach problems such as diarrhea and vomiting could be crucial COVID-19 symptoms among children and should be added in COVID-19 testing criteria which for now commonly include fever, cough and loss in sense of smell or taste, according to a recent study from Queen's University Belfast.
The study recruited 992 healthy children between two and 15 years old across Britain, testing their COVID-19 antibodies and collecting data about their symptoms.
It found that nearly 7 percent of the recruited children tested positive for COVID-19 antibodies, which means they had been infected before, though only about half of the children who tested positive had shown symptoms.
Among all the different symptoms, fever was the most common, which accounted for 31 percent of all the infected children. The second-most common symptoms were gastrointestinal issues, including diarrhea, vomiting, and stomach cramps, as 13 children showed these signs, making up 19 percent of all those infected.
"Gastrointestinal upset is a relatively common symptom of COVID-19 in children, and adding gastrointestinal upset to the list of symptoms triggering a test in children would improve case-finding," said the study.
Thomas Waterfield, lead author of the study, told the British Medical Journal that people should be cautious with children showing stomach problems, adding "they need to have had 48 hours clear of gastrointestinal symptoms before they go back to school to help reduce the potential spread of the virus." Enditem