By Kenneth Lipp
Dan Sapatkin reports in Philly.com that the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia has admitted three cases with neurological complications that researchers suspect may be linked to the recently prolific enterovirus HEV-D68. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notified the New Jersey Department of Health last night that a 4-year from Mercer County who died last week had tested positive for HEV-D68.
The not unprecedented but rare cluster of nervous system symptoms reported by CHOP is often caused by an infection. The “combination of muscle weakness and spinal abnormality,” writes Sapatkin, are being studied at “a growing number of institutions across the country that are seeking to understand clusters of cases with the same symptoms…… investigators hope to determine whether these symptoms are linked to an enterovirus, D68, that suddenly showed up in increasing numbers less than a month ago and has been causing respiratory illness in at least 40 states,” Sapatkin reports.
15 cases of HEV-D68 have been diagnosed in Pennsylvania and New Jersey (6 and 9, respectively).