State health officials say 19 cases of enterovirus in Indiana

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(Sept. 26, 2014) – There are now 19 cases of enterovirus in Indiana, according to the Indiana State Department of Health.

The illness can have serious effects on infants, children and people with underlying medical conditions. Indiana is one of several states affected by an outbreak across the U.S. Other states included are Illinois, Kentucky and Ohio.

The virus, known as enterovirus D68 or EV-D68 is a respiratory ailment that causes fever, cough, runny nose, sneezing and body aches. The strain, however, can cause breathing difficulty in children and those with weakened immune systems. In several cases, patients have required hospitalization.

Several area hospitals have put visiting restrictions in place in response to the outbreak in order to limit the spread of the virus.

State health officials continue to say that the best way to prevent the spread of EV-D68 is to wash your hands frequently and cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze.

The state health department said there are more than 100 strains of enterovirus with 10 to 15 million cases every year in the U.S. The infection typically occurs seasonally during the summer and fall.

State health officials say anyone experiencing cold-like symptoms should contact their doctor right away.