"Acute flaccid myelitis, or AFM is a very serious but very rare condition. Since 2014 when we first started tracking this phenomena, we've observed that on average less than one in a million children are affected by this condition."
Winder, Georgia - 26 October 2018
15.Various shots of Reid in his wheelchair
16.SOUNDBITE ( ENGLISH) Jennifer Peteet, Winder, Georgia:
"Nobody really knows, there is no prognosis for these specific kids."
Childhood cases of a mysterious paralyzing illness are continuing to mount, and health officials say this year's count could surpass the numbers seen in similar outbreaks in 2014 and 2016.
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the disease is rare and only 90 cases, across 25 states have been confirmed in 2018.
CDC officials say it's still not clear what's causing some children to lose the ability to move their face, neck, back, arms or legs. The symptoms tend to occur about a week after they had a fever and respiratory illness.
Health officials call the condition Acute flaccid myelitis. Doctors have suspected it might be tied to a kind of enterovirus, such as EV-D68 or EV-A71. A spike in EV-D68 illnesses coincided with the first mysterious wave of paralysis cases in 2014.
But it's not clear why most people infected with those viruses suffer only cold symptoms. It's noteworthy that there was no spike in EV-D68 when a larger wave occurred in 2016, CDC officials said.
And then there's the lack of clinical evidence: CDC officials have checked the spinal fluid of 77 of the 90 patients and found EV-68 in only one case and EV-A71 in only one other.
Some possible suspects, such as polio and West Nile virus, have been ruled out.
About 120 confirmed cases were reported in 2014. Another 149 were reported in 2016. In 2015 and 2017, the counts of reported illnesses were far lower.
The illness spikes in September each year. But it can take weeks to study them and decide if they should be counted in the outbreak. More than 250 more illnesses are being investigated, and some or many of those may join the count, CDC officials said.