Is it OK to get back out on the field?
While COVID-19 seems to be affecting children less severely than adults, the recent rise in cases across the country has led to concern from parents. One question that has come up: If your child contracts COVID-19, how soon can he or she return to normal activity, such as organized sports?
Dr. John Hambrook, a pediatric cardiology specialist with Aurora Health Care, said parents should check in with their pediatrician before allowing their child to resume playing sports after recovering from COVID-19.
“There’s so much we still don’t know about COVID, so it’s always smart to check in with your child’s primary care doctor before going back to normal,” Dr. Hambrook says. “There have been instances of inflammation of the heart with COVID, so we want to be sure to screen kids who may have had a more severe reaction to the disease.”
Ultimately, children who were asymptomatic or had a mild illness will be told to gradually return to normal activity and will not need cardiac testing before being cleared.
However, those children who had severe cases – hospitalization, abnormal cardiac testing during the acute infection, and/or had multisystem inflammatory syndrome) – will be treated cautiously and will be recommended for additional cardiac testing before clearing to return to sports.
Dr. Hambrook wants to reassure parents that the need for additional cardiac testing in children recently recovered from COVID-19 is rare. However, it’s important for parents to talk to your child’s provider before going back to organized sports.
“It’s all about being safe,” he says.
About the Author
Bridget Kozlowski, health enews contributor, is a public affairs manager with Advocate Aurora Health. She holds a masters degree in Public Affairs and a bachelor’s degree in journalism, both from the University of Missouri. Bridget previously worked as a reporter for the Chicago Tribune and has also lead local government communications teams for both the City of Sterling Heights, Michigan and the Village of Lombard, Ill. Bridget loves trying new restaurants, traveling and spending as much time as possible with her son, husband and rescue mutt.