By Ari Schnitzer | Copy Editor
The once rare D-68 strain of the enterovirus has hit Dallas this fall. The virus, which has been spreading across the entire nation since the summer and continues to spread, is still very active in DFW as well as in many other major cities.
The virus has been showing up in children more than any other demographic of people. Ten children in Dallas Country were hospitalized with the virus this past fall, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“I didn’t know the virus was this serious,” junior Taylor Horlick said.
News about the resurgence of the enterovirus hasn’t hit the media with the same force as news of Ebola cases. As hysteria about Ebola rages on, word about the Enterovirus continues to fly under the radar, despite the fact that hundreds have been diagnosed in the U.S. with enterovirus, compared to the four victims who have been diagnosed with Ebola on American soil.
“It amazes me the amount of attention Ebola receives compared to this Enterovirus,” junior Daniel Czornyj said. “To know that 10 children have been left partially paralyzed, I’m shocked that I didn’t hear about this more on the news.”
The virus can produce symptoms similar to the common cold, and at first it can be hard to detect. It commonly leads to severe respiratory problems, particularly with young children.
There is no vaccine for the virus. However, there is a vaccine for the flu, and because the Enterovirus and the flu have similar symptoms, it’s possible to rule one of the two out if a patient has had his flu shot.
The virus originally resurfaced in the Midwest region of the country and eventually made its way down to North Texas around late August and early September. It doesn’t appear to be going away anytime soon, as word has been heard about the virus’s arrival in Arizona. So far, the virus has infected around 700 people in this country.
The closer to winter, the safer people become. The enterovirus season is primarily summer and fall.