Sen. Amy Klobuchar calls on CDC to investigate rise in polio-like illnesses

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Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., urged the CDC to investigate the national uptick of acute flaccid myelitis infections among children in an Oct. 9 letter to CDC Director Robert Redfield, MD.

AFM is a rare, polio-like condition that affects an individual's nervous system and can cause sudden arm and leg weakness, according to the CDC.

Six children in Minnesota have contracted AFM since mid-September, the state health department said Oct. 5. Nationwide, the CDC has confirmed 362 AFM cases between August 2014 and August 2018.

In her letter, Ms. Klobuchar asked Dr. Redfield to accelerate the CDC's response and investigation of the spike in AFM cases. She also requested the agency answer seven questions about its response efforts by Oct. 16 and conduct a member-level briefing for senators seeking more information on the issue. 

"As AFM affects mostly children and has no known cure, it is imperative that CDC conduct an expedited investigation and response to AFM infections," Ms. Klobuchar wrote in the letter. "I urge the CDC to provide more information immediately about preventive measures and treatments."

More articles on clinical leadership and infection control:

UPMC Children's Hospital confirms 3 cases of polio-like illness

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Nevada hospital breaks its record for flu shots given in a day

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