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Doctor insights on: Poliomyelitis

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Dr. Richard Ehman
171 doctors shared insights

Poliomyelitis (Overview)

Poliomyelitis or polio is a serious infectious disease. It is transmitted person to person by oral- fecal route or contaminated water or food. It can cause serious paralysis in infected persons. There is no cure for polio, it can be prevented by polio vaccination. Polio has nearly been eradicated worldwide through immunization campaigns


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What types of poliomyelitis are there?

What types of poliomyelitis are there?

3 strains 5 outcomes: There are 3 strains of the virus. Infected people can have 5 basic outcomes. 90-95% are asymptomatic, showing no illnes.Abortive illness is a brief flu like process. Nonparalytic polio is longer & marked by neck&spine rigidity but no parylisis.Paralytic polio adds paralysis to the symptoms & some die. Some survivors of paralytic polio have a post polio syndrome (new weakness) 30-40 yrs later. ...Read more

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Dr. Richard Ehman
171 doctors shared insights

Poliomyelitis (Overview)

Poliomyelitis or polio is a serious infectious disease. It is transmitted person to person by oral- fecal route or contaminated water or food. It can cause serious paralysis in infected persons. There is no cure for polio, it can be prevented by polio vaccination. Polio has nearly been eradicated worldwide through immunization campaigns


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What are the major presenting symptoms of poliomyelitis?

See below:: As a highly infectious virus, polio invades the nervous system, and can cause total paralysis in a matter of hours. The virus enters the body through the mouth and multiplies in the intestine. Initial symptoms are fever, fatigue, headache, vomiting, stiffness in the neck and pain in the limbs. 1 in 200 infections leads to irreversible paralysis (usually in the legs). 5-10% die due to resp. Failure. ...Read more

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What are the tests for poliomyelitis?

What are the tests for poliomyelitis?

See below:: Tests include: cultures of throat washings, stools, or cerebrospinal fluid (csf); routine CSF examination; test for levels of antibodies to the polio virus. A physician may find: abnormal reflexes; back stiffness; difficulty lifting the head or legs when lying flat on the back; stiff neck ; & trouble bending the neck. ...Read more

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How will I know if I have poliomyelitis?

See your doctor: Luckily, due to the effectiveness of the polio vaccine, the disease has become very uncommon in the world. As of 13 june 2012, only 73 cases have been reported in the world this year. Most of them (40) were in nigeria. If you have a concern, i would suggest seeing your doctor. ...Read more

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What is the treatment for poliomyelitis?

What is the treatment for poliomyelitis?

See below:: The goal of treatment is to control symptoms while the infection runs its course. People with severe cases may need lifesaving measures, especially breathing help. Symptoms are treated based on their severity. Treatment may include: antibiotics for urinary infections, pain meds, physical rx, orthopedic surgery assistance with muscle recovery/strength. ...Read more

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Can poliomyelitis be genetic?

Can poliomyelitis be genetic?

No: Poliomyelitis occurs as a rare response to infection by one of 3 subtypes of the polio virus. These viruses commonly live in the intestinal tract and when common, 95% of those infected had no symptoms.Of those who developed the disease, the active distruction of nerve cells and eventual atrophy(shrinkage) of muscles the nerves supplied produced long term disability. ...Read more

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Who is most at risk from poliomyelitis?

Unimmunized: Maternal antibodies often protect a baby for their first weeks, after which they are at risk. Mortality and degree of disability was greater after the age of puberty when the disease was prevalent. Death often came within the first two wks. ...Read more

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What can you tell me about poliomyelitis?

Polio: Poliomyelitis is mostly eradicated in the modern world due to vaccines, and the disease exists mainly in feudal and primitive countries such as iran. It is caused by a virus which passes into the GI tract and then enters the spine. It affects the nerve cell body causing severe focal weakness and muscular atrophy, but can allow prevent breathing. ...Read more

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What are the signs of poliomyelitis?

What are the signs of poliomyelitis?

Flu-like symptoms of: sore throat, fever, nausea & vomiting in some, but infection with any serotype of poliovirus may not cause any symptoms in an immune-competent person. If the virus causes meningitis, add headache, stiff/sore neck & back, lethargy & risk of paralysis of the legs & other muscles including the diaphragm. I've seen kids die of poliomyelitis & other vaccine-preventable illnesses. I may see it again. ...Read more

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How can a person catch poliomyelitis?

Exposure to virus: The oral secretions of an infected patient are contageous before the onset of symptoms & up to two weeks. The patients stool will contain virus for weeks. You can be exposed to droplets of a cough& the virus can be active for days at room temperature on surfaces. Touch it & touch your mouth & you are exposed. It is a human to human only germ, no pets or insects. ...Read more

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How can poliomyelitis be transmitted?

Oral secretion/stool: The virus is active in the oral secretions of an infected patient from shortly before the onset of symptoms for up to 2 weeks. It is excreted in the stool for several weeks after the onset of illness. The virus is stable for days at room temperature. Contact with any viral material on hands or inhaled as droplets can pass the infection. ...Read more

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What are the tests for poliomyelitis?

See below:: Tests include: cultures of throat washings, stools, or cerebrospinal fluid (csf); routine CSF examination; test for levels of antibodies to the polio virus. A physician may find: abnormal reflexes; back stiffness; difficulty lifting the head or legs when lying flat on the back; stiff neck ; & trouble bending the neck. ...Read more

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What types of poliomyelitis are there?

3 strains 5 outcomes: There are 3 strains of the virus. Infected people can have 5 basic outcomes. 90-95% are asymptomatic, showing no illnes.Abortive illness is a brief flu like process. Nonparalytic polio is longer & marked by neck&spine rigidity but no parylisis.Paralytic polio adds paralysis to the symptoms & some die. Some survivors of paralytic polio have a post polio syndrome (new weakness) 30-40 yrs later. ...Read more

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How can humans contract poliomyelitis?

You eat it: This is caused by an enterovirus (gut virus) that is shed in the stool of infected carriers for weeks after what is usually a mild diarrhea. A percentage of those will develop paralytic polio weeks later as a lingering effect. Vaccination has essentially eliminated these strains from North America but it persists in pockets of the third world.It could return via air travel if vaccinations stop. ...Read more

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Who is most at risk from poliomyelitis?

Unimmunized: Maternal antibodies often protect a baby for their first weeks, after which they are at risk. Mortality and degree of disability was greater after the age of puberty when the disease was prevalent. Death often came within the first two wks. ...Read more

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What are the symptoms of poliomyelitis?

What are the symptoms of poliomyelitis?

Depends on type: There are two forms of poliomyelitis- the first does not cause long term muscle and nerve damage and has symptoms such as fever, headaches and GI symptoms- the paralytic form may have those symptoms plus signs of muscle weakness and floppy arms or legs Here is a helpful summary http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/polio/basics/symptoms/CON-20030957 ...Read more

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How will I know if I have poliomyelitis?

See your doctor: Luckily, due to the effectiveness of the polio vaccine, the disease has become very uncommon in the world. As of 13 june 2012, only 73 cases have been reported in the world this year. Most of them (40) were in nigeria. If you have a concern, i would suggest seeing your doctor. ...Read more

See 1 more doctor answer
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What can you tell me about poliomyelitis?

Polio: Poliomyelitis is mostly eradicated in the modern world due to vaccines, and the disease exists mainly in feudal and primitive countries such as iran. It is caused by a virus which passes into the GI tract and then enters the spine. It affects the nerve cell body causing severe focal weakness and muscular atrophy, but can allow prevent breathing. ...Read more

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What medications can treat poliomyelitis?

Polio: Treatment is supportive, such as Antibiotics to prevent infection in weak muscles, Analgesics for pain, Moderate exercise, & a nutritious diet , along with Rehabilitation such as Physical therapy. ...Read more

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Who typically is affected by poliomyelitis?

Who typically is affected by poliomyelitis?

Motor nerve cells: Polio virus affects the motor nerve cells of the spinal cord and brain stem. These cells are responsible for control of voluntary muscles causing paralysis. If the muscles of the chest wall are involved, the individual need mechanical assistance to breathe. ...Read more