Mother says daughter with polio-like illness is showing signs of recovery

A Jacksonville mom wants answers about an illness her little girl continues to fight.

Action News Jax first reported in October about 3-year-old Aamira, who was diagnosed with a polio-like virus that has been spreading across the country.

After more than three weeks of being in the hospital and then rehab, she is finally starting to show signs of recovery.

Little Aamira has been confined to a hospital bed and wheelchair for nearly a month after pain spread through her nerves, which made it impossible for her to walk on her own or even lift her right arm.

“She’s starting to use that left hand and lift that arm up, but nothing on the right arm,” her mother, Reba Faircloth said.

STORY: CDC detects seasonal pattern to polio-like illness, experts urge parents not to panic

She was diagnosed with acute flaccid myelitis (AFM), which is a rare polio-like virus that has been spreading across the country, primarily affecting children.

“I’m ready for them to find a cure, tell me something that’s going on of where she caught it, because I want to know, very much so, where it came from,” Faircloth said.

Her mother said doctors still don't have answers about the illness.
She brought her daughter to the hospital after Aamira collapsed in her bedroom on Oct. 14.

“I thought it was going to be forever till something progressed,” Faircloth said.

A little more than three weeks later and now at Brooks Rehabilitation Hospital, her 3-year-old is attempting to walk.

STORY: Jacksonville toddler fighting polio-like disease in ICU, mom says

MORE: Jacksonville sees first case of polio-like illness affecting children statewide

“I broke down in tears crying because I was so happy. I was like, 'OK, we are getting somewhere,'” Faircloth said.

Although she said her daughter still doesn’t have her balance, Faircloth said she’s happy to see progress.

“She’ll sit up on her own and everything, but when she walks, you have to help hold her,” Faircloth said.

Besides attempting to walk, her pain is starting to go away.

“I’m just happy my child is getting back to where she was,” Faircloth said.

A doctor at Wolfson Children’s Hospital said the illness usually comes in clusters and affects the nervous system, which can leave patients paralyzed.

STORY: Acute flaccid myelitis: Mom traveling to D.C. to fight polio-like illness

Faircloth said she does have concerns about her daughter’s health long-term.

“Her right arm, she doesn’t want to use it at all. It’s just still the same. I’m worried if that arm will not want to work,” Faircloth said.

Once her daughter can go home on Friday, the treatment doesn’t end.

Faircloth said she will still be on medication and will need extensive therapy.