Just Great: CDC Confirms a Busy Year for 'Polio-Like Condition'

Enterovirus-D68 virions; the CDC suspects AFM may be linked to enteroviruses.
Enterovirus-D68 virions; the CDC suspects AFM may be linked to enteroviruses.
Image: AP

The CDC has confirmed 116 cases of the “polio-like condition” acute flaccid myelitis that have been followed by the sudden onset of paralysis, mostly affecting children. Because parents didn’t have enough anxiety fodder between anti-vaxxers, looming global climate catastrophe, screen time, and the general state of the world.


CNN reported:

There are now 286 cases of possible and confirmed acute flaccid myelitis in the United States this year, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

That includes 116 confirmed cases of the rare polio-like illness, also known as AFM, that leads to sudden onset of paralysis. That’s 10 more confirmed cases than the agency reported a week ago. An additional 170 possible cases of AFM are under investigation.

More than 90% of the 440 patients with AFM since 2014 have been children younger than age 4. Most of the children with confirmed cases experienced a viral illness with symptoms including fever and cough about three to 10 days before the onset of paralysis, the CDC said this month.

NBC also noted that, per the CDC, “It is not linked to vaccines and it is not caused by polio,” and it’s just really fun to contemplate the online fever swamp that they’re keeping in mind when they write that sentence.

“Respiratory illnesses and fever from viral infections such as enteroviruses are common, especially in children, and most people recover,” the CDC added. “We don’t know why a small number of patients develop AFM, while most others recover.” That’s not particularly reassuring, nor is the thought of the disarray and rot throughout the executive branch. Hopefully the CDC has been more successful than other branches at keeping out the cronies and clowns so they can concentrate on this, romaine lettuce, advising people on how to handle their pet chickens—costumes are okay, kisses are not—and God knows whatever else is out there.

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Two friends of mine this year have had their young children (both under 2) just suddenly stop walking. Both had slight respiratory illnesses about three weeks prior to this instance. (Note, the friends don’t know each other and don’t live near each other, although they do both live in Texas.) And when I say slight, I’m talking slight - three to four days of coughs and sniffles and then a seemingly complete recovery. And then both children woke up one day a few weeks later and couldn’t walk anymore.

In both instances, some part of the virus had settled into the hip and knee joints of their legs, inflamed the joints and then caused the children pain upon walking. One of my friends was very lucky - her toddler recovered after about a week of medicine and one overnight hospital stay. The other is not so lucky - her toddler is still not recovered. The infection has moved into the bone and even though they have had numerous hotel stays and IV antibiotics daily, her baby is still not walking well and MRIs still show infection.

This shit is scary.