News from Our Nurse!
PUBLIC HEALTH ADVISORY
October 3, 2014
To: Solano County Schools
From: Solano County Public Health
SITUATION: Solano Public Health confirmed yesterday the first case of enterovirus D-68 (EV-D68) in a school age child. The child had mild symptoms and was not hospitalized.
BACKGROUND: Enteroviruses can cause various clinical symptoms, including mild respiratory illness, febrile rash illness, gastrointestinal illness, and neurological illness. Enteroviruses typically circulate in the summer and fall.
EV-D68 causes primarily respiratory illness; however the full spectrum of the disease is unclear. EV-D68 was first isolated in 1962 but it has rarely been reported in the US. Since August 2014, clusters of pediatric patients with severe respiratory illness due to EV-D68 have been identified nationwide. As of October 2, 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has confirmed a total of 514 people in 43 states with respiratory illness caused by EV-D68. Almost all of the cases thus far have been among children but it may also affect adults. As of October 2, 2014, the California Department of Public Health has confirmed a total of 8 cases in 4 counties, excluding the Solano County case. No deaths due to EV-D68 have been reported in California thus far.
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS: Enterovirus-D68 typically causes mild respiratory symptoms including runny nose, sneezing, cough, muscle/body aches, and fever; however, in this current outbreak, most patients have been afebrile. Patients with EV-D68 infection have presented with wheezing or difficulty breathing. There have been reports of limb weakness in children infected with EV-D68, but it is unclear at this time if the limb weakness is due to EV-D68.
TRANSMISSION: Enterovirus-D68 can be found in an infected person’s saliva, nasal mucus or sputum. It is spread from person-to-person through coughs, sneezes or contaminated surfaces.
TREATMENT: There is no specific treatment for people with EV-D68 infection. For people with mild respiratory illness, symptoms can be managed by taking over-the-counter medications. However, people with severe respiratory illness may require hospitalization and should seek medical care immediately.
PREVENTION: There is currently no vaccine against EV-D68. The best way to prevent infection is to wash hands often with soap and water as alcohol-based hand sanitizers have limited effectively against enteroviruses, avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth with unclean hands, avoid people who are sick, and disinfect frequently touched surfaces, such as toys and doorknobs, especially if someone is sick.
AT RISK: Infants, children and teenagers are most likely to become ill from EV-D68 infection because they do not yet have immunity from previous exposures to these viruses. People with asthma and those with history of wheezing may have a higher risk for severe respiratory illness from EV-D68.
REPORTING: We ask schools to report to Solano Public Health any outbreak of respiratory diseases.
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