6 Minnesota Kids Have Developed a Rare, Polio-Like Illness —and Health Officials Don’t Know Why

Six Minnesota children have recently been diagnosed with a rare, polio-like nervous system disorder that can cause paralysis — and the cluster is concerning and puzzling state health officials. The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has since mid-September received a half-dozen reports of children with acute flaccid myelitis (AFM), a severe condition that typically affects kids and can result in muscle weakness or paralysis, respiratory failure and even death, according to a statement. All of the Minnesota patients are younger than 10, and cases have been reported in northeastern and central parts of the state, as well as the Twin Cities area. “That is definitely more than would be expected,” says Kris Ehresmann, director of the infectious disease division at MDH. “To have six cases is really a striking departure from the norm.” Indeed, AFM is exceedingly rare: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that fewer than one in a million people in the U.S. get it each year, though it has been on the rise since a 2014 outbreak, sparking a CDC investigation. Minnesota typically sees a case or less per year, according to the MDH statement; even in 2014, only three cases were recorded there. AFM affects the spinal cord, impairing muscular function and reflexes, according to the CDC. Arm and leg weakness are common symptoms, but the disease can also involve facial weakness; difficulty swallowing, speaking and passing urine; numbne...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized healthytime Minnesota onetime Source Type: news

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(NEW YORK) — More children have been diagnosed with a mysterious paralyzing illness in recent weeks, and U.S. health officials said Tuesday that they still aren’t sure what’s causing it. This year’s count could surpass the tallies seen in similar outbreaks in 2014 and 2016, officials said. Fortunately, the disease remains rare: This year, there have been 90 cases spread among 27 states, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. It’s not clear what’s causing some children to lose the ability to move their face, neck, back, arms or legs. The symptoms tend to occur about a week a...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized onetime public health Source Type: news
A rare, polio-like illness continues to spread across the United States, puzzling and concerning health officials who are investigating the mysterious condition. So far this year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported a total of 72 confirmed cases of acute flaccid myelitis (AFM) in 24 states, including clusters in Minnesota, Pennsylvania and Colorado. Ninety percent of confirmed diagnoses were in children younger than 18, according to the CDC. The agency is investigating another 119 patients in connection with the disease, which causes symptoms including sudden arm and leg weakness, loss of musc...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized healthytime Infectious Disease onetime Source Type: news
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Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized healthytime New Jersey onetime Source Type: news
A viral illness outbreak has killed six children and infected 12 others at a medical facility in New Jersey, state health officials confirmed Tuesday. Eighteen cases of adenovirus, six of them fatal, have been confirmed among pediatric residents at the Wanaque Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation in Haskell, according to a statement from the New Jersey Department of Health. An investigation is ongoing, but the center has agreed not to admit new patients until the outbreak is deemed over. New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy said in a statement Tuesday that state and local health officials are working to contain the outbreak. ...
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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has so far this year recorded 127 suspected cases of a polio-like nervous system disorder that can cause paralysis, fueling an ongoing investigation into an outbreak of the rare disease. Of those 127 illnesses, 62 cases in 22 states are confirmed to be acute flaccid myelitis (AFM), the CDC said Tuesday. The CDC recorded only 33 confirmed cases of the severe condition — which typically affects kids and can result in muscle weakness or paralysis, respiratory failure and even death — during all of last year, though there were 149 cases the year before. “W...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized healthytime Minnesota onetime Source Type: news
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