IL investigating 9 ‘sporadic’ cases of polio-like illness in children

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She is now one of 38 children to develop partial paralysis from acute flaccid myelitis (AFM) in 16 USA states so far this year.

The Washington Department of Heath says all the children are 6 or younger. Among them is two-year-old Julia Payne, whose symptoms started off resembling those of a common cold.

The children live in King, Pierce, Lewis, Snohomish and Skagit counties.

Most of the cases logged by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have been children. Lurie Children's Hospital has treated at least two of the children diagnosed with AFM, but it had not received any additional AFM patients as of Friday.

The disease is not new but the cause remains unknown. As of now there has been 10 cases of AFM reported in Northern Illinois.

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As of now no AFM cases have been reported in Southern Illinois.

"Illinois has monitored this syndrome since 2014 when it was first described by CDC".

"The CDC has indicated there might be some increases in cases, and in mid-September we advised health care providers to be vigilant and report to the health department so that we can pass on the information to the CDC", Arnold said.

Symptoms include facial droop/weakness, difficulty moving the eyes, drooping eyelids, or difficulty with swallowing or slurred speech. AFM has been compared to polio because the condition can lead to paralysis.