Cases Of Polio-Like Illness Now Under Investigation

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The latest update from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said that 28 more suspected cases have been reported by state health departments since the previous update about a week ago, bringing the total number of possible cases to 155.

From August 2014 through September 2018, CDC has received information on a total of 386 confirmed cases of AFM across the USA; most of the cases have occurred in children.

The CDC has confirmed 62 cases across 22 states this year, compared with 33 cases last year, and is investigating dozens more reports.

Officials are investigating a fifth suspected case of a potentially devastating muscle-weakening syndrome that affects mostly children and can cause paralysis, the Massachusetts Department of Health and Human Services said Monday.

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That figure may seem small, but Friedman said Sick Kids normally sees only about two cases of AFM a year and the condition carries an annual incidence risk of about one case per million children. "Parents need to know that AFM is very rare, even with the increase in cases that we are seeing now".

Although the symptoms of AFM have been described as "polio-like", polio has been ruled out as a cause in the US cases, CDC said in a press conference.

EV-D68 is an enterovirus, a distant relative of the poliovirus. "AFM can be hard to diagnose because it shares numerous same symptoms as other neurologic diseases". "What the physician will do is rule out other causes rule out other things that might be causing it". By then, the body may have cleared the infection itself and tests may not turn up any specific viral cause.

AFM cases on the rise in the U.S. Story continues below video.

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All four of her children had come down with a cold at the same time, but young Abigail's condition continued to worsen despite her mother's best efforts to keep her kids healthy. "That's something that we're still really learning about", Jones said.

To date, however, according to the CDC, no pathogen or germ has been consistently detected in a patient's spinal fluid that indicates the cause of AFM.

Just about any virus can cause neuroinvasive disease, but they rarely ever do. Damage to the nervous system can be long-lasting or permanent. They include West Nile virus, Jamestown Canyon virus, Lacrosse virus, Powassan virus, St. Louis encephalitis and Eastern equine encephalitis.

This is why the CDC's advice for preventing an infection that might lead to AFM is so general: wash your hands, and cover up and use repellent to prevent insect and tick bites.

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