News Updates


Acute Flaccid Myelitis (AFM) – Jan. 23, 2019

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Acute flaccid myelitis (AFM) is a very rare condition that affects a person’s spinal cord marked by the sudden onset of weakness in the arms or legs. Less than one in a million people in the United States will get AFM each year. There is no specific treatment for AFM, and in most cases the cause is unknown. Because the cause of most of the AFM cases is unknown, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is conducting an investigation to determine possible causes and risk factors for the condition. Possible causes include infections, environmental toxins and genetic disorders. AFM is not required to be reported, but DSHS is asking all healthcare providers to report suspected cases of AFM to their local health departments.

AFM can be difficult to diagnose because it shares symptoms with several other neurologic conditions. All suspected cases of AFM are reviewed by the CDC to determine if they meet the case definition. It can take about a month for the status of a case to be determined.

CDC data shows a pattern of increased AFM cases in late summer to early fall of every other year beginning in August 2014. Texas providers have reported 55 cases of AFM since 2014. Most of the cases occur in children.

AFM Case Counts by County, Texas 2018

Acute Flaccid Myelitis Case Counts by County, Texas 2018*†
County Case Count
Collin 3
Dallas 3
Fort Bend 1
Galveston 1
Gregg 1
Harris 4
Hays 1
Hill 1
Kaufman 1
Midland 1
Parker 1
Smith 1
Tarrant 5
Travis 3
Webb 1
Total 27 
Figure 1: Acute Flaccid Myelitis Case Counts by County, Texas 2018*†

AFM Case Counts by Year, Texas 2014 - 2018

Figure 2: Acute Flaccid Myelitis Case Counts by Year, Texas 2014 - 2018*†
Year 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018‡
Case Counts 3 0 19 5 28
* Data provisional as of 1/8/2019
† Case counts include both probable and confirmed cases of AFM
‡ 2017 case reported in 2018 classified as confirmed case on 12/5/2018
 

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West Nile – Jan. 1, 2019

This is the final West Nile virus update for 2018. We’ll begin posting 2019 case counts and have final 2018 numbers later in the year. People should continue to protect themselves from mosquito bites whenever there is mosquito activity, which can include during winter and spring months in warmer parts of the state.

DSHS News Release

Additional surveillance information

Reported 2018 West Nile Cases by County

West Nile Case Counts by County in Texas, 2018
County West Nile
Fever
West Nile Neuroinvasive Disease Total
Angelina 1 1
Bailey   1 1
Brazos 1 1 2
Briscoe 1 1
Cameron 1 1
Carson 1 1
Castro   1 1
Chambers 1 1
Collin 2 2 4
Dallas 2 11 13
Denton 2 2
Ector 1 1
El Paso 3 3 6
Fort Bend 2 2
Galveston 1 1
Gregg 2 2
Guadalupe 1 1
Harris 7 26 33
Haskell 1 1
Hidalgo 2 2 4
Hunt 1 1
Lubbock 1 3 4
Montgomery 3 8 11
Navarro 1 1
Orange 1 1
Randall 1 1
Roberts   1 1
Smith 1 3 4
Tarrant 6 12 18
Tom Green 1 1
Travis 1 3 4
Trinity   1 1
Walker 1 1
Webb 1 1
Wharton 1 1
Total 35 96  131 
Figure 3: West Nile Case Counts by County in Texas, 2018

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Last updated January 23, 2019