Spike in Mycoplasma Pneumonia Cases at Fort Worth’s Cook Children’s Medical Center

Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth is experiencing a significant increase in mycoplasma pneumonia cases. Last week, 80 out of about 400 patients tested positive for this bacterial infection, compared to zero cases during the same week last year, According to Reported by Fox4 News.

Mycoplasma pneumonia can be particularly severe for children with pre-existing conditions. The medical community at Cook Children’s is urging North Texas parents and childcare providers to be vigilant, referring to the situation as a “mini epidemic.”

“Usually, we see it most commonly in children under six. This season, we are seeing it in every age group,” said Dr. Stephanie Felton of Cook Children’s Health. “We’re seeing it in adolescents and even in very small infants.”

Dr. Nicholas Rister from Cook Children’s Health noted that elevated rates often lead to more severe cases and unique side effects associated with mycoplasma. Symptoms resemble those of the common cold but can be more severe in children with conditions like asthma, causing prolonged coughing, fever, pink eye, or a rash in the mouth or on the skin with large blisters. as reported by Yahoo.

“If you look in the back of the mouth of your kids, you might see little vesicles or bumps in the back of the throat,” Dr. Felton explained. “That can be very painful when they are drinking or eating, which might indicate mycoplasma.”

Though mycoplasma pneumonia is treatable, it is notoriously difficult to detect and can cause “walking pneumonia.” Dr. Felton mentioned that it spreads through respiratory droplets, especially during summer activities like camps, playgrounds, and pool parties.

“For most people, it’s self-limiting, and they get better. But for some, a small 10% or so, it can get more severe, and hospitalization may be needed,” said Dr. Rister. “Symptoms include a cough, shortness of breath, and fever. If severe, you might need hospital care for IV antibiotics or breathing support.”

Cook Children’s reported a 20% positivity rate last week, with 80 out of 398 patients testing positive. This is a stark contrast to the zero cases reported during the same period last year.

“I think the biggest thing is when you are worried about your child, please seek medical care,” urged Dr. Felton. “Call your pediatrician or visit urgent care centers if your pediatrician is unavailable.”

Doctors advise parents to seek medical attention if their child has a fever for more than five days or experiences difficulty breathing.