Boston Children's Hospital Confirms Four Cases of Neurological Illness with Limb Weakness

BOSTON (Sept. 30, 2014 — 5 p.m. ET) — Boston Children’s Hospital today confirmed it has treated four patients demonstrating neurological illness with limb weakness whose symptoms match the criteria set by the CDC.

The CDC’s official case definition for the neurological illness:

Patients ≤21 years of age with acute onset of focal limb weakness occurring on or after August 1, 2014 and an MRI showing a spinal cord lesion largely restricted to gray matter.

 Boston Children’s and Neurologic Illness with Limb Weakness:

  • Boston Children’s has treated four children ranging from four to 15 years old who meet the CDC’s criteria for the Neurologic Illness with Limb Weakness of unknown etiology.
  • Enterovirus was not detected in the spinal fluid of the four patients. Nasal samples have been sent on all four patients for enterovirus testing.  One has tested negative at a commercial laboratory, two have tested negative at the Massachusetts State Lab, and one is pending at the Massachusetts State Lab.  Boston Children’s is also waiting for results on enteroviral screening of the four patients’ stool samples.
  • One patient was discharged, two are on a medical floor and one is in the intensive care unit.
  • All four patients had a recent history of respiratory illness.
  • Clinicians are also monitoring closely two additional patients who meet just one of the two criteria set by the CDC.

Please note: At this time, a connection between EV-D68 and the Neurologic Illness with Limb Weakness has not been definitely proven.

 About Boston Children’s Hospital

Boston Children’s Hospital is home to the world’s largest research enterprise based at a pediatric medical center, where its discoveries have benefited both children and adults since 1869. More than 1,100 scientists, including seven members of the National Academy of Sciences, 14 members of the Institute of Medicine and 14 members of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute comprise Boston Children’s research community. Founded as a 20-bed hospital for children, Boston Children’s today is a 395-bed comprehensive center for pediatric and adolescent health care. Boston Children’s is also the primary pediatric teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School. For more information about research and clinical innovation at Boston Children’s Hospital visit: