October 24th – World Polio Day – Is it still there or not?

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Do you know when was the last case of Wild Polio in India reported? It was on 13th January 2011 in West Bengal and Gujarat. On March 27, 2014 WHO declared India – POLIO FREE COUNTRY.




October 24 is celebrated as Polio day all over the World. Its time to refresh our knowledge about this dreaded disease.

Polio known as Poliomyelitis is a highly contagious disease caused by polio virus that attacks nervous system. Chidren below 5 years are more prone to develop this disease.

Do you know, according to WHO 1 in 200 Polio Infections will result in permanent paralysis?

Now we know about India, but is there any country where Polio is still persisting? Answer is yes. Afghanistan, Pakistan and Nigeria are still  reporting cases of wild polio disease.




Subclinical Polio – 95% of people who contract polio virus are asymptomatic but are still carriers of polio disease.

Non Paralytic Polio – Signs and Symptoms can last from one to ten days which includes, fever, sore throat, head ache, vomiting, fatigue and meningitis. Non Paralytic Polio is also known as abortive polio.

Paralytic Polio – One percent of polio cases will develop to Paralytic Polio. This includes Paralysis of Spinal cord – Spinal Polio, Brain stem – Bulbar polio or both – Bulbospinal Polio.

Paralytic Polio is the villain or the dreaded polio.

Early symptoms are similar to Non Paralytic Polio but later loss of refexes, Severe spasms and muscle pain, loose and floppy limbs, sudden paralysis, deformed limbs in hips, ankle/feet starts to develop.

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Some people may survive Polio in childhood, but something is waiting for those in late period of life ie Post Polio Syndrome – PPS. Maybe after 15 – 20 years. Possibility for PPS in Polio Survivors is 25 – 50%

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Next question is how does somebody especially children are infected with Polio virus?

As a highly contagious virus, polio transmits through contact with infected feces. Objects like toys that have come near infected feces can also transmit the virus. Sometimes it can transmit through a sneeze or a cough, as the virus lives in the throat and intestines.

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Sometimes people with poor access to running water and flush toilets may also get infected.

One doubt, Whether Polio can be treated or not? Answer is an absolute no. Only vaccination can prevent the disease from happening. That’s all.

One more word regarding the most commonly given Polio Vaccine – It is of two types is one is Inactivated Polio Virus – IPV given by injection. The commonly used is live attenuated Oral Polio Vaccine – OPV. In India OPV is given at Birth, after one month/4 weeks then again after 4 weeks. But in India we are giving opv to all children below five years of age via Pulse Polio Immunisation Schedule.

So that was a very short briefing to remind you about this day – October 24th – World Polio Day, summary of the disease and current status in India. Thank you for reading and please support http://www.nursescircle.com by giving a like or share……Team Nursescircle.com

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