Illinois, Colorado, Washington report cases of polio-like illness in children

The Illinois Department of Public Health is investigating nine recent cases of acute flaccid myelitis, also ...

Posted: Oct 11, 2018 2:51 PM
Updated: Oct 11, 2018 2:51 PM

The Illinois Department of Public Health is investigating nine recent cases of acute flaccid myelitis, also called AFM, according to a statement Wednesday.

All of the cases are in patients younger than 18 and have been clinically diagnosed by health care providers, the statement said. State health officials are working with the care providers to obtain the samples and information to send to the US Centers for Disease and Prevention for testing and confirmation of the diagnoses.

Colorado

Continents and regions

Diseases and disorders

Enterovirus

Government and public administration

Government bodies and offices

Government departments and authorities

Health and medical

Health departments

Illinois

Infectious diseases

Life forms

Microscopic life

Midwestern United States

North America

Polio

Public health

Public health administration

Respiratory diseases

Southwestern United States

The Americas

United States

Viruses

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Government organizations - US

US Department of Health and Human Services

US federal departments and agencies

Children

Demographic groups

Families and children

Family members and relatives

Northwestern United States

Population and demographics

Society

Washington (State)

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

All of the patients are "from northern Illinois," according to the health department, but no other location information was provided.

Since 2015, when Illinois began monitoring reports of AFM in the state, four confirmed cases have been identified.

AFM is a polio-like illness that affects a person's nervous system, including the spinal cord. Symptoms can include sudden limb weakness, loss of muscle tone and reflexes, facial and eyelid drooping, facial weakness, difficulty moving the eyes, swallowing difficulty or slurred speech, according to the CDC.

The rare condition can be caused by a virus, a genetic disorder and environmental toxins.

Health officials in Washington state are investigating five possible cases in patients from four different counties. "All cases are among infants and children under age six who all reportedly had symptoms of a respiratory illness in the week prior to developing symptoms of AFM," the Washington State Department of Health said in a statement Wednesday. The children were all hospitalized after experiencing "sudden onset of paralysis of one or more limbs."

The state health department is working with the CDC to determine if these are indeed cases of AFM.

Separate from these five cases of illness, there has been one other case of AFM in Washington this year and there were three cases identified in 2017, according to the health department.

There is no treatment other than managing each patient's symptoms.

Dr. Rachel Herlihy, the Colorado state epidemiologist, said the best prevention is frequent handwashing and keeping kids home when they are sick.

On Tuesday, the Colorado Department of Health said it has confirmed 14 cases there this year. All of the patients are children who have needed to be hospitalized, the department said, noting that "nearly all have fully recovered."

"The state health department has been monitoring this situation closely since early spring. In addition to investigating the outbreak, the state health department has issued alerts to health care providers on how to test for the viruses and enhanced guidance to child care centers on infection prevention," the department said in a statement.

The type of viruses found in 12 of the Colorado cases, enterovirus, typically increases in summer and fall and is common, the state department of health said. However, 11 of the Colorado cases of AFM have tested positive for EV A71, a rare type of enterovirus not usually seen in the US, rather in Asia and other parts of the world, according to Herlihy. "This is certainly the largest outbreak of enterovirus A71 we've seen in Colorado."

She referred to these 11 cases as an outbreak within an outbreak. "We have 41 cases of children who have had some sort of illness of enterovirus A71, which is causing a wide spectrum of neurological illness."

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

On Friday, the Minnesota Department of Health said it was investigating six cases of AFM in children over the past few weeks but did not identify what virus or other cause may have led to the illnesses.

As of September 30, according to the CDC, 38 cases of AFM have been confirmed in 16 states. This does not include all of the 14 cases announced by Colorado, as some of those cases were confirmed after September 30. It also does not include the cases in Minnesota or Illinois, as they are not confirmed.

Since August 2014, when the CDC began tracking the illness more closely, the agency has reported 362 cases.

In 2017, 33 cases were reported in 16 states. One hundred forty-nine cases were reported in 39 states in 2016 and 22 cases in 17 states in 2015.

Terre Haute
Clear
51° wxIcon
Hi: 70° Lo: 44°
Feels Like: 51°
Robinson
Clear
51° wxIcon
Hi: 70° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 51°
Indianapolis
Partly Cloudy
57° wxIcon
Hi: 70° Lo: 47°
Feels Like: 57°
Rockville
Clear
50° wxIcon
Hi: 69° Lo: 44°
Feels Like: 50°
Casey
Clear
57° wxIcon
Hi: 68° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 57°
Brazil
Clear
51° wxIcon
Hi: 69° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 51°
Marshall
Clear
51° wxIcon
Hi: 70° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 51°
Clear, Bright Moon
WTHI Planner
WTHI Temps
WTHI Radar

WTHI Events

 

Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Cases: 1671275

Reported Deaths: 27903
CountyCasesDeaths
Cook63319811182
DuPage1078031375
Will910281124
Lake797931082
Kane68211868
Winnebago40918559
Madison40014592
St. Clair36230595
McHenry34584326
Champaign26931196
Peoria26845368
Sangamon25682284
McLean22947217
Tazewell20601330
Rock Island18783360
Kankakee17848248
Kendall16162113
Macon15259250
LaSalle14983285
Vermilion14303199
Adams13097152
DeKalb12114133
Williamson12027174
Whiteside8265183
Jackson808394
Boone790483
Coles7857122
Ogle754587
Grundy735386
Franklin7317115
Knox7244169
Clinton7113102
Macoupin6927104
Marion6907143
Henry661677
Effingham658099
Jefferson6523143
Livingston596098
Stephenson580992
Woodford575292
Randolph553799
Christian531882
Fulton525875
Monroe5243103
Morgan505299
Logan494274
Montgomery489881
Lee478060
Bureau442190
Saline433169
Perry432375
Fayette429564
Iroquois419977
McDonough373460
Shelby345848
Jersey335153
Crawford331330
Lawrence330833
Douglas326237
Union305848
Wayne301762
White279333
Richland279057
Hancock273035
Cass265330
Clark265240
Pike263358
Clay258254
Edgar256749
Bond255625
Warren243665
Ford242859
Carroll236038
Moultrie231433
Johnson225131
Wabash217019
Jo Daviess215129
Massac214148
Mason212752
Washington211628
De Witt204930
Greene204840
Mercer203435
Piatt200914
Cumberland189526
Menard171913
Jasper161021
Marshall141221
Hamilton133622
Schuyler107010
Brown106410
Pulaski103811
Edwards103418
Stark81228
Gallatin7878
Alexander71712
Scott7136
Henderson69814
Calhoun6902
Hardin59816
Putnam5614
Pope5476
Unassigned1632433
Out of IL70

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Cases: 1000163

Reported Deaths: 16309
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1347632106
Lake660041156
Allen57441793
Hamilton46100461
St. Joseph44109607
Elkhart35696507
Vanderburgh32087477
Tippecanoe27796257
Johnson24902443
Hendricks23738354
Porter22802362
Madison18614404
Clark18424250
Vigo17347301
Monroe15180197
LaPorte15046250
Delaware14984259
Howard14626287
Kosciusko12217147
Hancock11630175
Bartholomew11505179
Warrick11255189
Floyd11013214
Wayne10897250
Grant9964218
Morgan9404176
Boone8863116
Dubois8227130
Dearborn817093
Henry8139151
Noble7984106
Marshall7838134
Cass7499119
Lawrence7403170
Shelby7138114
Jackson694088
Gibson6533113
Harrison644491
Huntington633999
Knox6273106
DeKalb626397
Montgomery6208109
Miami589797
Putnam575377
Clinton570271
Whitley560455
Steuben554675
Wabash5279101
Jasper524475
Jefferson506996
Ripley495685
Adams476073
Daviess4616113
Scott435869
Greene422096
Wells420987
Clay420260
White415962
Decatur4133101
Fayette404286
Jennings385160
Posey375343
LaGrange353978
Washington353249
Randolph341999
Spencer337342
Fountain332558
Sullivan326752
Starke313369
Owen312070
Fulton306567
Orange291762
Jay280445
Perry264752
Franklin264042
Carroll259132
Rush258832
Vermillion255454
Parke230026
Pike227943
Tipton226659
Blackford190540
Pulaski181855
Crawford158623
Newton156048
Benton150217
Brown144547
Martin137419
Switzerland134211
Warren120516
Union106815
Ohio84112
Unassigned0538