Reports of possible cases of a rare disease that resembles polio afflicting children around the country are hitting closer to home.

Kathy Whyte/WNBF News

Doctors report two people have been seen at Upstate Medical Center in Syracuse for a kind of Enterovirus that could be associated with Acute Flaccid Myelitis, which has left several children paralyzed, some permanently.  It’s not clear if the cases in Central New York have been confirmed as AFM.

The disease has been showing up suddenly, mainly in children and often first exhibits with cold symptoms.  The condition worsens with weakness in limbs and, in worse cases, could cause paralysis of muscles associated with breathing, like the diaphragm.

AFM is rare, so doctors assure people not to panic.  Still, it is a good idea to stay away from people who are sick, frequently wash hands and use alcohol-based hand sanitation products.