Identical baby twins have puzzled doctors after one suffered a rare coronavirus-related illness and the other did not.
Five-month-old Leia Godwin was rushed to Royal Gwent Hospital in Newport earlier this month, after her mum Hannah noticed she had a rash and high temperature while sister Thea was ‘healthy and happy’.
As well as the red blotches spreading across Leia’s body, the baby’s arteries began to swell to a ‘life threatening’ size and she was struggling to breath.
Leia initially tested negative for coronavirus, but further tests showed she had developed antibodies to it, suggesting she had previously had the virus but was asymptomatic.
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She was treated for an inflammatory disease in young children linked with an extreme reaction to Covid-19, which doctors have described as being similar to Kawasaki disease, a rare childhood syndrome that causes a rash, swollen glands and a fever.
Her parents, Hannah and Simon, said doctors were baffled as to why twin sister Thea did not come down with an infection when the pair spend every moment together.
‘At home they basically mirror each other, they do everything together, so we are unsure as to why Leila had it and Thea didn’t’ dad Simon told Good Morning Britain.
In April, NHS doctors were told to look out for a rare but dangerous inflammatory reaction to coronavirus in children. The warning was prompted by eight young people becoming ill with Kawasaki-like symptoms, including a 14-year-old who died.
Up to 100 children in the UK are now thought to have been affected by a Kawasaki-like illnesses linked to coronavirus.
Also appearing on GMB, Dr Jennifer Evans, a consultant paediatrician, said there would be lots of medical interest in the twins as doctors try to find more answers about the link between coronavirus and Kawasaki disease.
France, Italy, Spain, the US and Canada have also noticed the rare but extreme symptom appearing in children with coronavirus.
Dr Evans said: ‘Children on the whole are generally only effected in a very minor way by Covid, but paediatrics are finding that a few children have an unusual inflammatory complication.
‘It’s important to stress its extremely rare, there are only few cases [of Kawasaki] but its more than we expect so it has led us to believe it is linked to Covid.
‘We don’t know why certain children are presenting like this and others no. Having a pair of identical twins will be very interesting and I think we will be looking at the girls in the future.’
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