Myths & Facts

Polio: Know About Facts, Causes, Symptoms, Treatment And Prevention

polio-Vaccine
Written by Inguin Team

Polio is a contagious diseases which is caused by the poliovirus. The words polio (grey) and the word myelon (marrow, indicating the spinal cord) are derived from the Greek.

The effect of poliomyelitis virus on the spinal cord leads to the classic manifestation of paralysis involving legs but may less commonly involve the muscles of the head, neck and diaphragm due to which the person gets paralyzed.

Fight against Polio

Facts About Polio

  • In 1789, British physician Michael Underwood provided the first clinical description of Polio. Subsequently in 1840, Jacob Heine too described the clinical features and its effects on the spinal cord.
  • It was in 1894, first outbreak of polio in epidemic scale took form in the U.S. in Vermont, with over 130 plus cases reported.
  • On October 24th World Polio Day Is Celebrated.

Causes

Polio is caused by the poliovirus. The virus enters the environment in the feces of someone who is infected. The virus spreads from feces into the water supply. Poliovirus is highly infectious and targets children easily.

The virus enters through the mouth and the virus multiplies at the site of implantation in the pharynx and gastrointestinal tract. The virus is usually in the throat and in the stool before the onset of illness. The virus invades lymphoid tissue and enters the bloodstream and then infects the cells of the central nervous system.

Symptoms

Majority of people don’t become sick and are never aware they’ve been infected with polio.

But still some develop symptoms from the poliovirus contract nonparalytic polio which is a type of polio that doesn’t lead to paralysis though usually causes mild flu-like signs and symptoms which is typical to that of other viral illnesses like fever, Sore throat, Vomiting, Headache, Fatigue

Some other symptoms are Back pain or stiffness, Neck pain or stiffness, Pain or stiffness in the arms or legs, Muscle weakness or tenderness, Meningitis

Treatment

There is no treatment that will cure polio.

Pain in muscles and joints is a major issue for people with PPS(post-polio syndrome). Polio survivors experiencing pain should diagnose its cause. Improving abnormal body mechanics and postures by supporting weakened muscles  simple exercises lifestyle changes prevents further pain.

  • Medications like non-steroidal anti inflammatory (NSAIDS – aspirin, ibuprofen and naproxen), acetaminophen (Tylenol), benzodiazepams (Xanax, Valium) are used to reduce and eliminate the pain effectively.
  • Agents such as ice or heat, ultrasound and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) helps reducing the pain.
  • Identifying the factors contributing to fatigue and eliminating them deals fatigue to a certain extent.

Prevention

Injecting IPV ( Inactivated poliovirus vaccine ) promoting  clean way of disposing feces  prevents polio. Polio is infectious. There is no cure, but it can be prevented by effective vaccines. Hence polio focuses on preventing infection by immunizing until the world is polio-free.

  • Polio can be prevented over immunization. Polio vaccine always protects a child for life.
  • Improved public sanitation and personal hygiene reduces the spread of polio, the most effective way to prevent the disease is with polio vaccine.

IPV ( Inactivated poliovirus vaccine ) is 90 percent effective after two shots and 99 percent effective after three.

  • #Note: Consult a doctor in case you are unable to manage the health issues on your own.

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About the author

Inguin Team

Inguin is an online integrated healthcare delivery system, just for you. It is an integrated platform in which all your healthcare needs ranging from diagnosis to recovery are fulfilled on the same platform.

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