Kawasaki disease

A rare acute illness of unknown cause that most commonly affects children under 2. The disease is characterized by fever lasting 1–2 weeks, conjunctivitis, dryness and cracking of the lips, swollen lymph nodes in the neck, reddening of the palms and soles, and a generalized rash. By the end of the 2nd week of illness, the skin at the tips of the fingers and toes peels and other symptoms subside. The heart muscle and coronary arteries are affected in about 1 in 5 cases. High dose gammaglobulin and aspirin may be given to prevent associated heart complications. Most children recover completely.


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