Sunday, 21 October, 2018

Minnesota kids diagnosed with rare, polio-like disease

Celia Hoffman | 10 October, 2018, 05:21

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

On Friday, the Minnesota Department of Health announced there have been a total of six reports of pediatric acute flaccid myelitis (AFM) since September 20.

"The patients are now undergoing diagnostic procedures and treatment", said Andrea Kunicky, a spokeswoman for UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, where the children are being treated.

There have been 38 confirmed cases in 16 states so far, and now it's in Pittsburgh.

"UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh is taking care of three children with suspected Acute Flaccid Myelitis".

Local public health officials have been notified and are working with the hospital, state Department of Health and the CDC, county Health Department spokesman Ryan Scarpino said.

More news: Huawei Mate 20 hits AnTuTu and Weibo

It resembles polio, but unlike polio, there is no vaccine for AFM.

"I just felt so sad for him, that this thing we didn't know about and couldn't protect him from had happened and had taken a lot away from him", Michael Young said.

Symptoms of the rare disease include weakness and loss of muscle tone, facial droop or weakness, difficulty moving the eyes and difficulty swallowing and slurred speech.

AFM dates back to 2014.

On Tuesday, Sen. Klobuchar sent a letter to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention urging them to investigate and respond to the recent increase in AFM cases.

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