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Health officials report 9th child with mysterious neurological illness in Washington

SEATTLE — Health officials say a ninth child has been hospitalized in Washington state for a polio-like illness.

The ninth child is from Snohomish County and was recently admitted to Seattle Children’s Hospital.

Julie Graham of the health department says two of the nine children were confirmed with a rare virus known as acute flaccid myelitis, or AFM. The other seven children are being evaluated. They range in age from 3 to 14 years old.

One of the children died over the weekend. AFM is a possible cause of his death but hasn’t been confirmed.

His parents said he was sent to the hospital with cold symptoms and dizziness. He was paralyzed within a few hours and never recovered.

Washington state had no cases of AFM last year and two in 2014. At least one of those two patients is paralyzed from the neck down.

Three of the nine patients remain in the hospital. The cases come from five Washington counties: King, Pierce, Franklin, Snohomish and Whatcom.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.