What is this rare and mysterious respiratory illness sending hundreds of US children to Hospitals?
It is called human enterovirus 68 and it’s spreading amazingly fast!
A respiratory illness, EV-D68, is sending hundreds of children to hospitals in Missouri, Colorado and other states, possibly including Ohio, Illinois, North Carolina and Georgia. In Kansas City, Children’s Mercy, has recorded around 475 cases of the illness with at least 60 patients requiring intensive care due to the respiratory virus. The mystery illness strated spreading in mid-August, around the time area schools started. Last week, more than 900 Colorado children ended up in intensive care units around the state because of the same infection.
What are Enteroviruses?
Enteroviruses cause between 10 and 15 million infections a year. Typically, the viruses cause mild summer colds, as well as other infection. Peak enterovirus season is in September.
But the strain striking children now is presenting as more serious than usual. An outbreak that requires so many patients to be hospitalized is incredibly rare, even unprecedented.
This epidemic of hospitalization related to this mysterious respiratory illness might be just the tip of the iceberg in terms of severe cases. Doctors don’t have all the answers yet. The question is WHEN will they do!