Raccoon Disease Blinds NY Teen

Health officials issue alert over raccoon ringworm
By Amelia Atlas,  Newser User
Posted May 3, 2009 6:45 AM CDT
A raccoon wanders a city street.   (©_cck_)
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(Newser) – New York playgrounds are on alert as two reported cases of a rare, fatal disease spread by raccoons has blinded a Brooklyn teen in one eye and left an infant with brain damage, reports the New York Daily News. Raccoon ringworm is a disease contracted through the animal's feces that attacks the nervous system. City health officials are advising parents to keep an eye on small children.

"The concern for me would be kids being kids," worried one mother. "When they're slightly out of sight, they're going to pick up something in the course of their normal behavior and put their filthy hands in their mouths."