Minnesota kids diagnosed with rare, polio-like disease

6 Minnesota kids diagnosed with rare, polio-like disease

6 Minnesota kids diagnosed with rare, polio-like disease

Last week, the Minnesota Department of Health announced that six children under 10 had been diagnosed AFM since mid-September.

"The CDC will make the final determination on diagnoses and numbers are subject to change", the statement said. In addition to the pair of cases at CHOP, three cases are also being treated in Pittsburgh, 6ABC reported.

AFM is a rare condition that affects the nervous system, specifically the spinal cord. But those aren't the only signs: Other symptoms can include eyelid or facial drooping, difficulty moving the eyes, difficulty swallowing and slurred speech, according to the state health department. There is no known cause or cure but it may be related to the virus that causes the common cold. However, officials said, there are several other possible cases being investigated, and it takes about a month to go through the CDC evaluation process.

Five children under 6 have been hospitalized with a sudden limb paralysis that has local, state and national health officials investigating whether it's a serious but rare condition called AFM.

To try and restore function to Maipele, Dr. Mitchel Seruya at Children's Hospital Los Angeles carried out a pioneering nerve transfer surgery.

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

Doctors now don't know a lot about how AFM spreads. "They're exactly alike. It's patchy, focal weakness, and it can occur anywhere in the body", said Dr. Acosta. Another medical expert said surgery was an option in severe cases.

"While all the patients were hospitalized, almost all have fully recovered", the department stressed. However, she was later diagnosed with acute flaccid myelitis, or AFM.




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

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

In previous years, cases of AFM in Colorado and elsewhere have been positive for a different enterovirus, EV-D68.

One case has also been confirmed in Wisconsin.

Six is the highest number of cases Minnesota has ever seen.

Cases of AFM start popping up across the country in late summer and early fall in small numbers.

In 2016, there were nine cases of AFM in Washington and three in 2017.

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