Sick child (illustrative)
Sick child (illustrative) iStock

The Jerusalem child diagnosed with polio may be left with paralysis in half his body, Channel 12 News reported.

The child, whose gender the Health Ministry did not reveal in an attempt to protect his identity, was not vaccinated against polio, due to his parents' opposition to the vaccine. Now, the child is suffering from neurological weakness, and doctors are concerned he may remain crippled.

According to the Channel 12, the child was brought for medical examination after presenting signs of weakness in the left half of his body. One of the tests conducted as part of the examination revealed that the child was infected with polio.

The doctors now hope that the child will overcome the virus without suffering irreversible damage, but it is possible that the child's symptoms will worsen and that he will suffer paralysis in the same fashion children did during the 1950s.

Meanwhile, though this is the first time a child has been diagnosed with polio in Israel since 1989, the Health Ministry is concerned that there may be dozens to hundreds of cases of infection, and has begun working to locate those who were in close contact with the child. The Ministry also understands that the child was infected by someone else, Channel 12 added.