[Ed. – This has been around for about six years now, and is thought by some researchers to be related to an enterovirus, EV-D68. Headlines have indicated a recent significant upswing in the number of cases identified. The disease leaves some victims partially paralyzed.]
The CDC and doctors across the country are braced for more cases of AFM, which seems to mostly affect children although it has also been reported in a handful of adults.
Although the CDC says its researchers still are not sure of a cause, the pattern of the reported cases strongly points to a virus, doctors say. The No. 1 suspect is a distant relative of polio called enterovirus D68 or EV-D68.
The paralyzing condition was first seen in notable numbers in 2014, when the CDC confirmed 129 cases. The next year, just 17 were confirmed but in 2016, 149 cases were confirmed. Case counts fell off again in 2017 — 33 cases were confirmed — but numbers have risen again with 62 reported cases so far in 2018.