106 cases of polio-like illness confirmed across 29 states

Mackenzie Bean - Print  | 

The CDC has confirmed 106 cases of acute flaccid myelitis across 29 states in 2018, according to CNN.

Here are four things to know:

1. The new count, which the agency released Nov. 19, marks a 16-case increase from a week prior. The agency also identified 167 possible AFM infections, up five cases from last week.

2. The CDC first identified AFM in 2014. Since then, the agency has confirmed 430 cases nationwide, 90 percent of which occurred in children.

3. The cause of AFM is still unknown. One hypothesis is that the illness is caused by the body's own immune response to an infection, according to Nancy Messonnier, MD, director of the CDC's National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. "We're not ruling anything out at this point," she said during a Nov. 13 press briefing.

4. The CDC also boosted state health department funding to help physicians identify and treat patients with AFM, which includes the creation of an AFM task force made up of national experts, according to Dr. Messonnier.

More articles on clinical leadership and infection control:
One-third of US parents may not vaccinate their kids for flu this year, poll finds
North Carolina sees worst chickenpox outbreak in 20 years — at a school with high vaccine exemption rates
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