Via CIDRAP, Robert Roos writes: EV-D68 cases jump to 443 as neuro illnesses probed. Excerpt:
The tally of enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) cases in US children jumped to 443 today, up 166 since Sep 26, federal health officials reported, as an investigation of nine neurologic illnesses in Colorado that may be linked to the virus continued.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported today that confirmed cases number 443 in 40 states, up from 277 cases in the same number of states 3 days ago. All but 1 of the cases are in children.
The contagious respiratory virus had been fairly rare in the United States until clusters of cases surfaced in Chicago and Kansas City, Mo., in August. It causes cold-like symptoms but can lead to serious breathing difficulty, especially in children who have asthma, the CDC says. Infants, children, and teenagers are most at risk for getting sick.
The only states that have not yet had any confirmed cases in the current outbreak, according to a CDC map, are Alaska, Hawaii, Oregon, Nevada, Arizona, Tennessee, Florida, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine. Several other states have suspected cases, according to media reports.
Testing for the virus is complex and slow, and only the CDC and a few state health labs can do it, the CDC says.
No deaths have been reported in the outbreak, but a Sep 26 ABC News story said New Jersey authorities were investigating whether the virus contributed to the recent death of a 4-year-old boy who had a respiratory illness. The story gave no other details about his case.