Health Care

Colorado, Illinois, Washington Report Cases Of Polio-Like Illness In Children

Colorado, Illinois, Washington Report Cases Of Polio-Like Illness In Children

The condition is called acute flaccid myelitis, or AFM, which attacks the nervous system and can lead to arm or leg weakness and loss of muscle reflexes.

She referred to these 11 cases as an outbreak within an outbreak.

There is no specific treatment for AFM, but a doctor who specializes in treating brain and spinal cord illnesses may recommend certain interventions on a case-by-case basis.

Other states have also reported cases. And yesterday (Oct. 10), the Illinois Department of Public Health said it had received recent reports of nine children diagnosed with the condition. "The patients are now undergoing diagnostic procedures and treatment", the hospital said in a statement to Pittsburgh's Channel 11. Between January 1 to September 30, 2018, 38 people in 16 states have been confirmed to have AFM.

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We've been reporting about the polio-like illness affecting two children here in Chicago, nine in northern IL and others across the country, but how concerned should parents be about the spread to their children?

"The CDC will make the final determination on diagnoses and numbers are subject to change", the statement said.

Acute flaccid myelitis is thought to happen after someone contracts a virus, like a poliovirus, West Nile virus, or adenovirus, the CDC says.

AFM is a weakening of the nerves that causes partial paralysis in children.

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Shannon Barbare, a spokeswoman for the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, told Fox News Tuesday there have been 14 confirmed cases of AFM in the state so far this year - though it's unclear if all of those cases were included in the CDC's latest report. The CDC has not identified a germ that has been consistently found in every case of AFM, according to its website. Other patients have it much worse.

While there is no cure, health experts say you should take preventative measures including washing your hands or coughing into your elbow. Most of the cases nationwide have been in children. Three cases were reported in 2017, and one other case was reported in Washington since the beginning of 2018.

There was a cluster of nine cases of AFM in Washington state back in 2016 and three cases past year.

It also does not include the cases in Minnesota or IL, as they are not confirmed.

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