What is Post-Polio Syndrome?
For years polio was one of the most feared diseases in America, responsible for crippling paralysis and death. In 1952, it reached its peak in the United States with more than 21,000 paralytic cases, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Jonas Salk introduced the polio vaccine in 1955, stopping the spread of the disease and eventually eradicating it in the United States.
Nearly 1.63 million polio survivors live in the United States today, US Public Health Service estimates 140,000 survivors of the 1940 and 1950 epidemics in Texas. Who knows how many younger survivors got polio in South America and Mexico and have immigrated to Texas. This means there are 50,000 survivors for every 8 million Americans.
More than 300,000 of the country's' polio survivors may be at risk of post-polio syndrome, which is marked by muscle weakness, pain, fatigue, breathing problems and decreased tolerance of cold temperatures, symptoms that appear 10 to 40 years after the initial illness. The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke estimates that Post Polio Syndrome affects between 25 and 50 percent of these survivors.
Post-polio doctors at TIRR Memorial Hermann evaluate, diagnose, and treat symptoms and complications resulting from post-polio syndrome. They help patients maintain function and ensure quality of life. Find a post-polio doctor.