What you need to know about the “mystery virus” acute flaccid paralysis

An unexplained increase in cases of a rare “mystery virus” among children is causing concern across North America. Acute flaccid paralysis, also known as acute flaccid myelitis, is being compared to polio because it causes the loss of function in one or more limbs. Watch the video below to hear from Dr. Jeff Pernica, an infectious disease expert at Hamilton Health Sciences, on what we know about AFP, how to recognize it, and whether you should be concerned.


Important Notes:

  • Acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) is a condition that affects the nervous system.
  • Side effects include children having difficulty moving their limbs, moving the muscles in their face and swallowing.
  • Our neurologists and infectious disease specialists are experienced in providing the care needed for this condition.
  • AFP is not a new condition, though it is rare.
  • There have been sporadic small outbreaks over the years, the last being in 2014.
  • Due to the rarity of the condition most parents don’t have to worry about it happening to their children.
  • To help prevent the condition make sure children are washing their hands and are up to date on all vaccinations.