In its latest update on the situation, the CDC reported that, between August 2, 2014 and January 5, 2015, it had verified reports of 103 children in 34 states who developed acute flaccid myelitis (AFM) as the result of a mysterious, unidentified illness.
n August 2014, the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC), along with its partner organizations, began investigating reports of children across the U.S. falling sick with a mysterious illness. These children had developed sudden onsets of weakness in one or more of their arms or legs. Subsequent MRI scans revealed inflammation of the "gray matter" nerve cells in the spinal cord. The CDC is now referring to this as "acute flaccid myelitis".
In its latest update on the situation, the CDC reported that, between August 2, 2014 and January 5, 2015, it had verified reports of 103 children in 34 states who developed acute flaccid myelitis (AFM).
The CDC is collaborating with its partners across the nation build up a picture of the outbreak and to identify the risk factors and possible causes of this condition. Testing of several types of specimens for various pathogens that can result in this syndrome is ongoing. So far, we know that:
On January 9, the CDC issued Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) containing a detailed analysis of cases confirmed through November 13, 2014.• The median age of the children was about 7 years.
• Almost all of them were hospitalized; some were put on breathing machines.
• Most patients had fever and/or respiratory illness before onset of neurologic symptoms.
• About two thirds of the children who have been observed (median 19 days) after their illness reported some improvement in symptoms, while about one third showed no improvement. Only one of the children has fully recovered.
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