Lenawee County health officials on alert after Michigan infant dies of Enterovirus

LENAWEE COUNTY, MI (Toledo News Now) - Enterovirus D-68 has affected hundreds of kids across the country, and complications from the virus have killed at least five people this year. The Children's Hospital of Michigan says that a 21-month-old girl died last Friday due to complications of the Enterovirus.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says symptoms of the virus are similar to a cold or the flu, and it is spread the same way.

There are now 35 confirmed cases of Enterovirus in the state of Michigan. The Lenawee County Health Department says they are keeping a close eye on it.

"It's transmitted actually through respiratory secretions," said Patsy Bourgeois, health officer with Lenawee County Health Department. "It's transmitted similar to colds by coughing, sneezing."

The virus, also known as D-68, affects mostly young children because their immune system is not completely developed.

"We're asking people to stay home if they're sick," said Bourgeois. "And as always, to wash their hands, to watch for symptoms and if symptoms develop into more severe - which is difficulty breathing - especially those children or adolescents who have other health problems, [should] see a physician immediately."

Adrian mother Becky Hutchins says she isn't too concerned about Enterovirus because she's confident that she's doing all the right things.

"It's something that we want to be aware of," said Hutchins. "Personally just keeping up with hand washing and all of that."

Symptoms to look out for include common cold symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, fever, wheezing or difficulty breathing.

Doctors at the CDC say anyone with a respiratory illness should go to the doctor if they are having trouble breathing or if symptoms get worse.

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