Mostly Pakistan is polio free, but in federal areas due to lack of awareness and knowledge mostly children become victim of polio in their early age. In Pakistan disease periodically spreads from FATA to other parts of the country and internationally.
Only 3 countries (Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan) remain polio-endemic. In Pakistan vaccination is held on monthly basis to protect children’s from polio disease. Here below we write about polio disease, causes, transmission , symptoms, treatment tips. Also you can read this post in Urdu.
Also called Poliomyelitis or infantile paralysis, is a viral disease that causes paralysis in severe cases. Poliomyelitis, is a febrile illness, which is caused by viruses of the enterovirus group.
The viruses infect the brain gray matter. They prefer those cells which are responsible for the voluntary movements in humans. There are three types (serotypes) of polio virus:
- Type I Serotype: The most common pathogen that causes a serious disease.
- Type II: Causes only a mild illness.
- Polio Type III: Causes a serious disease, but is relatively rare.
Causes and Transmission
The disease virus enters through the mouth or nose into the body. You can get infected through saliva droplets smallest that come when speaking or breathing in the air, or in direct contact with people.
Most people who are infected with the virus (over 95%) are lucky: you do not even notice the infection because they do not develop symptoms. In 5% of cases there is a flu-like illness with fever, cough, sore throat, headache, body aches and sweats.
In a few people, the virus infects even neurons in spinal cord and brain. This can lead to the dreaded muscle paralysis.
There is no specific treatment for polio, which fights the causes also no specific drug against the polio virus exist yet. The doctor can only treat the individual symptoms. Heat and pain medication can relieve muscle pain.
Fallen vital muscles, patients are cared for in the ICU and there ventilated or malnourished. After an acute poliomyelitis, patients often have to take care of several years. A physical therapy can help them cope with paralysis. Custom made shoes can make walking easier. In some cases, help in, for example, muscle tissue is added to an orthopedic surgery.
The more important is a prophylaxis in the form of a vaccination . Here, there are 2 types:
- Vaccination after Sabin: oral live vaccine (polio vaccine against all 3 serotypes).
- Vaccination after Salk: Two doses of vaccine are given a third dose at 12 months at intervals of 6-8 weeks. A booster vaccination is recommended after 10 years.
Meanwhile, the inactivated vaccine is often used as after vaccination with live vaccine is a danger that the vaccinated person active polio viruses with the chair resigns, which can lead to a risk of unvaccinated people (for example, living in the same household).
There are several types of the virus, there is a good protection against polio until an immunity against all three serotypes , so all three types exists. Namely, specific antibodies against each serotype formed, but it does not come to a cross-immunity .