Polio is a disease caused by viral infection. The virus resides in the region of the throat and intestinal tract. It is responsible for the disability in people.
Polio is a very challenging disease for the person who is suffering from it.
What is Polio?
As we all know, viral diseases are very contagious and bad news. We just need to go through proper analysis, or we can say diagnosis to go for the later processes.
Polio is a very contagious disease caused by viral infection. It cannot be seen as only a virus that causes physical impairment because in severe cases it is responsible for nerve injury which results in paralysis, and death as well in some cases.
According to the data, the last case of Polio (naturally occurring Polio) in the United States was in 1979.
It is because of the advancement and proper medical assistance given to the patient.
In today’s world, people are still in the grasp of this deadly virus, and small children and adults all are in danger of being affected by the poliovirus. In different parts of Asia and Africa, the rate of getting affected by the poliovirus continues.
The CDC (Centres for Disease Control and Prevention) issues precautions and measures and they insist on taking these precautions to protect oneself from the deadly virus of Polio because there is always a risk of getting Polio especially when a person is traveling.
Poliomyelitis or Polio is a communicable disease. It can easily be transmitted from person to person who comes in contact directly or indirectly with each other. It affects the brain and spinal cord of the infected person. 
The CDC Guidelines for Poliovirus are stated as:
- Every child should get the dose of the vaccine at different stages of life.
- These stages of age are given below:
– At 2 months old.
– At 4 months old.
– At 6 months through 18 months (about 1 and a half years) old.
– At 4 years through 6 years old.
If a person follows these guidelines the chances of getting the poliovirus will be reduced to 98% to 99%. 
It is advisable that if a person is traveling somewhere he does not know about the environment, surroundings, and the locality of that place, he should take the booster dose of the poliovirus vaccine (IPV). The booster virus vaccine contains the inactive poliovirus. The booster makes the immunity against the virus last long for the whole life of the patient.
What are the symptoms?
The poliovirus is deadly, we know that but how one can analyze himself or herself whether they are suffering from Poliovirus or not.
Most of the people (72 out of 100) who are infected by the Poliovirus do not have any visible symptoms. But some of them have flu-like symptoms.
The symptoms of Poliovirus can be categorized as:
- Fever- The body of the patient will have a fever.
- Soreness in Throat- It is because of the presence of the virus the throat of the patient got infected and he can feel the soreness in his throat.
- Headache- The Headache will be there apart from the fever.
- Vomiting- The vomiting is also another symptom that can be seen.
- Patient having Fatigue- Having Fatigue because of the presence of the virus as it started to attack the nerves.
- Pain in the Back of the patient- As the virus strikes on the site of the spinal cord, back pain is also one of the major symptoms of poliovirus.
- Pain in the Neck of the patient- It is again because the virus is starting to attack the spinal cord and brain of the patient.
- Stiffness in the Motor Parts of the patient- as the virus started to develop and started to damage the neuron of the nerves, the motor parts like arms and legs started to feel stiff.
- Tenderness in Muscles- As the virus grows and damages the neurons of the nerve they lose the capabilities to control the muscles and hold them in their position and hence resulting in paralysis.
The symptoms which are like flu will fade away in a week. But as the time passed, the viral infection started to grow and slowly damaged the motor parts of the patient’s body by attacking the spinal cord and brain.
These symptoms changes into:
- Paresthesia- feelings of getting twitched with pins and needles in the muscles.
- Meningitis- about 1 out of 25 people have these symptoms in which the infection of the covering of the spinal cord or brain took place.
- Paralysis- Unmovable body parts or weakness in the arms and legs or both. 
What is Paralytic syndrome?
The most severe symptom which is associated with Polio is paralysis. Because paralysis also results in permanent disability or physical impairment which later turns into death.
The death is because the virus of the polio attacks the neurons, neurons, or nerve cells are the small units of the nervous system. Nervous systems consist of these nerve cells as they are responsible for transmitting sensory input from the external environment.
The paralytic syndrome is the most serious form of syndrome that happens because of the infectious virus. Sometimes people mistake the initial symptoms of paralytic symptoms as these symptoms resemble flu-like symptoms. Later these symptoms develop into paralytic syndrome which includes:
- Loss of reflexes
- Severe muscle aches
- Loose and floppy limbs or motor parts.
Post-polio syndrome is a sign which can be seen in a person after years of having polio. These signs include:
- Joint weakness and pain.
- Breathing problem
- Swallowing problem
- Sleep-related breathing disorders
- Decreased tolerance to cold temperatures
When to see a doctor?
First of all, it is the duty of parents to make their children vaccinated with the oral polio vaccine. If they somehow miss it, they need to prioritize getting their children vaccinated first.
Apart from this, call your doctor if:
- Your child has not completed the vaccination series
- If the child has an allergic reaction to the vaccine.
- If the person had polio years ago and is now facing unexplained fatigue and weakness.
The polio vaccination is available in two variants. The first variant is taking it orally, the second one is taking a shot of an injectable one. The oral one is known as OPV~ Oral Polio Vaccine, whereas the injectable one is known as IPV~ Injectable Inactivated Polio Vaccine.
If somebody has taken the vaccine in the year 2000 then the vaccination which they had was an Oral one and this oral one is made up of live poliovirus.
Vaccines which are made up of live viruses are highly effective in protection against polio.
There are a number of cases per year that are caused by Oral vaccination. That is why the introduction of IPV came into being. It is made of dead poliovirus (inactive) so it is safer than the Oral one. It is given as a shot. The arms and legs are the ideal part for getting a shot of this vaccine.
Who needs the Polio Vaccine?
There are no criteria to answer who should get the vaccine for polio, in fact, everybody needs to get a shot of the vaccine to avoid the life-threatening problems.
It is best and advisable that children should be vaccinated at different stages of their growth.
The right stage of vaccination will be good if it is given at the right time. And these stages are as follows:
- A dose at the age of 2 months
- A dose at the age of 4 months
- A dose at the age of 6 – 18 months
- A dose at the age of 4 – 6 years
There are people who need to take special care, they need to be cautious and those are:
- Travelers- who like to travel to different parts of the world and they do not know the surrounding in a better way.
- People who examine the specimens that might contain or have poliovirus in them.
- Health care workers who have close contact with the person who has poliovirus.
If someone does not get vaccinated in their childhood they do not need to worry. They need to consult with their doctors and should go for the first dose at any time. But after taking the first dose they need to take the dose after 1 to 2 months of the first dose. The third dose must be in between the 6 to 12 months of the first dose.
Who should not get the Polio vaccine?
People if they have:
- Severe allergic reaction from the previous dose of the vaccine.
- Severe allergic reactions from the antibiotics.
There are no side effects to be found in pregnant women who have received the vaccine.
Risk and side effects of the vaccine
There is no such risk apart from having a sore area around the point where the vaccine shot has been given. Moreover, there is a serious issue if the person is allergic to the earlier dose of the vaccine. But it does not cause any serious harm.
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