An 11th child suffering partial paralysis after a bout of respiratory illness is being treated at Children’s Hospital Colorado, officials said Friday. The Denver Post reported the child lives outside of Colorado, but in one of the neighboring states within Children’s Hospital Colorado referral area which includes Wyoming, Montana, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico and South Dakota.
Dr. Sam Dominguez, a microbial epidemiologist at Children’s, said test results for Enterovirus 68, or EV-D68 are pending.
Prior to this most recent case of unexplained partial paralysis, 10 children from 1 to 18 years of age in Colorado were hospitalized with this sickness since early August. The children were hospitalized with muscle weakness or paralysis mostly in their arms or legs and and cranial nerve dysfunction.
Cranial nerve dysfunction is weakness related to cranial nerves that includes symptoms like facial droop, difficulty swallowing and double vision.
Other signs include most of the children had a problem with their spinal cord that could be seen on a magnetic resonance image (MRI) scan, all had a fever, most with symptoms of respiratory illness, about one week before they felt muscle weakness and about half of the children had EV-D68 in their nose secretions.
“At present, we can say this is a relatively rare occurrence,” said Samuel Dominguez, M.D., PhD, microbial epidemiologist at Children’s Colorado. “The way this neurologic illness presents itself in children is usually not subtle; in most cases, parents will be able to recognize the rare symptoms.”
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is actively investigating this development and has not yet confirmed an association between neurologic illness and enterovirus D68 or any other respiratory illness. For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page