UC San Diego Logo Filipinos probably make up the largest Asian subgroup in San Diego County. Well, children belonging to this subgroup seem to be under a great threat of Kawasaki disease (KD). According to a study undertaken by the Kawasaki Disease Research Center at the University of California, San Diego and Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego, Filipino children have higher chances of being diagnosed with KD.

These kids apparently have increased threat for inflammation of the heart’s blood vessels than those of other Asian and non-Asian backgrounds. At the time of the study, investigators thoroughly scrutinized 345 KD patients from San Diego Country. Clinical and demographic data across three groups such as Filipino, non-Filipino Asians and others was gathered. Around 24 percent of Filipino children with KD in San Diego County and 10.5 percent of other Asian descent reported aneurysms.

Some of the clinical signs for KD may be fever, rash, red eyes, swollen glands in the neck, swollen and red hands and feet, as well as red, cracked lips. If left neglected, one in four children presumably develop permanent damage to their blood vessels and heart. In conclusion, Adriana H. Tremoulet, MD, MAS, assistant professor, Department of Pediatrics, UC San Diego School of Medicine and colleagues assert that genetic reasons raise attack rate of KD and aneurysms in Filipino children. Further investigations will be conducted to make the Filipino community aware about the ailment and also to understand the genetic reasons why Filipino children are at higher risk of more severe KD.

The study was published in the May 6, 2011 issue of Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal.