Symptoms of AFM
- AFM is a rare but serious condition that causes muscle weakness and paralysis.
- If you or your child develops any symptoms of AFM, you should seek medical care right away.
- Sudden onset of arm or leg weakness and loss of muscle tone and reflexes is the most common symptom.
- Seek medical care right away if you or your child develops any of these symptoms.
Most people will have sudden onset of:
- Arm or leg weakness
- Loss of muscle tone and reflexes
Some people will also have:
- Facial droop or weakness
- Difficulty moving eyes
- Drooping eyelids
- Difficulty swallowing
- Slurred speech
- Pain in arms or legs
In rare cases, people may also:
- Have numbness or tingling
- Be unable to pass urine (pee)
The most severe symptoms of AFM are:
- Respiratory failure: This happens when the muscles involved with breathing become weak and can require a ventilator (a machine to help them breathe).
- Serious neurologic complications: In very rare cases, it is possible that the process in the body that triggers AFM may also trigger other serious neurologic complications that could lead to death.
Seek Medical Care Right Away
- If you or your child develops any of these symptoms, you should seek medical care right away.
- Your doctor may collect information about your symptoms and send this information to their health departments. This is because CDC is asking doctors to be alert for patients with symptoms of AFM so that we can learn more about this condition.
Page last reviewed: June 24, 2019