CDC investigates rise in mysterious brain abscesses among Nevada kids

Southern Nevada saw cases of rare, serious brain abscesses among children triple in 2022. Now the CDC is investigating what caused the increase, according to an April 28 report from CNN.

Specifically, in the Clark County region, physicians noticed more than 75 percent of cases were found in boys around age 12 — and cases began to increase significantly after March 2022, but the reason is a mystery to physicians, according to CNN.

The average number of cases per year before this was between four and five. In 2022 cases jumped to 18, CNN reported.

The Southern Nevada Health District Division of Disease Surveillance and Control conducted its own investigation into the increases and concluded that the cases had "no common exposures," adding to the puzzle. 

Now the CDC will take the reins to dive deeper into what may have caused the sudden boom. 

Physicians in other states have noted a rise as well. Sunil Sood, MD, a pediatric infectious disease specialist at Northwell Health in New York, told CNN he believes he and his staff are seeing around twice as many cases of brain abscesses in children than before.

Brain abscesses can cause other serious conditions, including seizures and impaired balance, vision and speech, but they are not a condition that physicians are mandated to report, and involvement from agencies like the CDC only comes after additional assistance is requested.

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