Sixth Washington child hospitalized with mysterious illness, health officials say

There's been a spike in a rare polio-like disease that mostly affects children. State health officials say 14 cases have been reported in Colorado

Sixth Washington child hospitalized with mysterious illness, health officials say

The cases involve infants and children under the age of six who all reportedly had symptoms of a respiratory illness in the week prior to developing symptoms of AFM. "It can be a very significant impact for the rest of that child's life". It is believed that AFM can be contagious, and for this reason, isolation protocols are in place for patients who are confirmed to have the neurological illness. Between 2014 and 2018, the CDC received reports of more than 360 cases.

The causes of AFM are unknown, but it can develop as a result of a viral infection.

AFM is a serious but rare condition that affects a portion of the spinal cord, causing muscles and reflexes in the body to become weak, according to the CDC.

On Monday, news broke that six children in Minnesota have been infected with the rare disease that causes lowered mobility or paralysis in the arms and legs.

At this point, doctors are not required to report AFM to the state, so it is possible that there could be unreported cases out there, according to DSHS.

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Doctors say that it can start out just like a common cold.

In her letter, Ms. Klobuchar asked Dr. Redfield to accelerate the CDC's response and investigation of the spike in AFM cases. "Among the people confirmed with AFM, CDC did not consistently detect EV-D68 in every patient". There isn't a vaccine that could prevent AFM and there isn't a vaccine that causes the condition, medical experts said.

Though the CDC says it's not necessarily proven to guard against AFM, they recommend frequent hand-washing with soap and water. You can reduce the chance of mosquito bites by using insect repellent and keeping kids indoors during times when mosquitos are prevalent. While rare officials over the US are dealing with a spike in cases.

Since Orville Young, a 4 year old in Minnesota, fell ill with a fever in July, CBS News reported, he has experienced difficulties moving his right arm - sometimes experiencing full paralysis - and was diagnosed with AFM.

AFM can be hard to diagnose because it shares numerous same symptoms as other neurologic diseases, like transverse myelitis and Guillain-Barre syndrome.

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