Human Interest

Japanese pediatrician who discovered Kawasaki disease dies at 95

Tokyo, Jun 10 (efe-epa).- Japanese pediatrician Tomisaku Kawasaki, who discovered a rare respiratory syndrome in children and which was named in his honor, died in a Tokyo hospital at 95, the research center that bears his name reported Wednesday.

Kawasaki disease is a generalized inflammation of the arteries that occurs in children under 5 and which was back in the news weeks ago, on suspicion of a possible link of the disease with COVID-19.

The doctor passed away on Friday afternoon, the Japan Research Center for Kawasaki Disease announced.

This rare pathology has an incidence of 90 cases in Japan and 30 or 40 cases in Europe for every 100,000 children, making it one of the main causes of acquired heart disease in minors in developed countries.

Some of the symptoms of this pathology are fever for more than five days, rashes, red eyes, inflammation of the lips, throat and tongue; while the initial treatment consists of aspirin and immunoglobin at high doses.

The causes of this disease have not yet been determined and there is no clear evidence that it is linked to a virus or bacteria, according to the Japanese news agency Kyodo.

Tomisaku Kawasaki first came into contact with this then-unknown disease in 1961 and witnessed several similar cases in the following years.

In 1967, he wrote an article in the journal of clinical observations on allergies “Arerugi” with his discoveries that caused the disease to be baptized in his honor.

This pediatrician, who had begun working in 1950 in what would later become the Japanese Red Cross Medical Center, retired in 1990 from this institution and became the leader of another organization that would later be renamed the Japan Research Center of Kawasaki Disease.

His work was awarded by the Japanese Academy, the Pediatric Society of Japan, and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government. EFE -EPA


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