Sec­ond case of rare par­a­lyz­ing dis­ease is con­firmed in SC

The State (Sunday) - - Local - BY DAVID TRAVIS BLAND tb­[email protected]­tate.com Travis Bland: 803-413-8485; @dtrav­is­b­land

South Carolina health of­fi­cials have con­firmed an­other case of a rare, po­lio-like ill­ness that mostly im­pacts chil­dren.

The De­part­ment of Health and En­vi­ron­men­tal Con­trol said this week that a sec­ond per­son in the Up­state was di­ag­nosed with acute flac­cid myeli­tis, Liv Osby of The Greenville News re­ported.

The rare con­di­tion, also known as AFM, af­fects the ner­vous sys­tem and can cause paral­y­sis.

In Oc­to­ber, DHEC con­firmed the first case of AFM for 2018. That pa­tient was also lo­cated in the Up­state.

Since 2014, health of­fi­cials have seen an in­crease of the rare dis­ease na­tion­wide. The dis­ease is of­ten likened to po­lio but is not caused by the poliovirus, ac­cord­ing to the Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol and Pre­ven­tion.

The CDC says that 90 per­cent of pa­tients ex­pe­ri­ence “a mild res­pi­ra­tory ill­ness or fever con­sis­tent with a vi­ral in­fec­tion be­fore they de­vel­oped AFM.” Those symp­toms give way to sud­den weak­ness in the arms and legs, dif­fi­culty mov­ing eyes and trou­ble with swal­low­ing or slurred speech. The con­di­tion typ­i­cally sets in be­tween Au­gust and Oc­to­ber, ac­cord­ing to the CDC.

“There is no spe­cific treat­ment for AFM, but a doc­tor who spe­cial­izes in treat­ing brain and spinal cord ill­nesses (neu­rol­o­gist) may rec­om­mend cer­tain in­ter­ven­tions on a case-by-case ba­sis,” ac­cord­ing to the CDC. ““The most se­vere symp­tom of AFM is res­pi­ra­tory fail­ure that can hap­pen when the mus­cles in­volved

THE DIS­EASE IS OF­TEN LIKENED TO PO­LIO BUT IS NOT CAUSED BY THE POLIOVIRUS, AC­CORD­ING TO THE CEN­TERS FOR DIS­EASE CON­TROL AND PRE­VEN­TION.

with breath­ing be­come weak.”

Doc­tors aren’t sure of the spe­cific cause of AFM but the dis­ease has po­ten­tial links to cer­tain en­terovirus, which typ­i­cally cause flu like symp­toms from which peo­ple re­cover.

Pub­lic health au­thor­i­ties do not know what causes AFM and are un­sure how to treat it, the CDC notes, but most re­cover from the ill­ness, Mcclatchy re­ported in Oc­to­ber.

The CDC has found that AFM cases in­crease ev­ery two years. The CDC re­porters:

AAAAIn 2017, CDC re­ceived in­for­ma­tion for 33 con­firmed cases of AFM in 16 states.

In 2016, CDC re­ceived in­for­ma­tion for 149 con­firmed cases of AFM in 39 states and DC. In 2015, CDC re­ceived in­for­ma­tion for 22 con­firmed cases of AFM in 17 states. From Au­gust to De­cem­ber 2014, CDC re­ceived in­for­ma­tion for 120 peo­ple con­firmed cases of AFM in 34 states.

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