Polio claimed the lives of 1,873 children before being eradicated from the U.S. in the late 1970’s. Now, it seems to be back again, this time paralyzing 103 children in just over two years!
Acute flaccid myelitis, or AMF, a new threatening disease, is being linked to polio, due to its lasting effect on the spinal cord. When diagnosed with this disease, a person will first experience weakened limbs, facial drooping, and difficulty speaking, followed shortly thereafter by paralyzes and sometimes death.
Only four children have been known to escape this terrible fate through medication because, unlike polio, there is no confirmed cure for AFM. Meaning, citizens of the 34 states with confirmed cases must take extreme precautions in order to avoid this highly contagious disease.
Unfortunately, California is one of those hapless states, causing anxiety for many mothers and children. Scientists are working hard to find a vaccination for this heartbreaking disease, but for the time being, all we can do is hope for the best.