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What every parent should know about polio

The introduction of universal vaccination polio was eradicated in most countries. But now the polio virus begins to spread again, even in countries where there are no more. If we do not vaccinate against the disease, it can happen in our country.

Polio, or poliomyelitis virus is a highly contagious disease. Infects the nervous system and may cause complete paralysis within hours. Called. poliovirus spreads from person to person:
fecal-oral route, ie. from infected faeces eg. via unwashed hands put in the mouth,
through contaminated (infected) water or food.

Among initial symptoms include fever, fatigue, headache , vomiting, stiff neck and pain in the limbs.

irreversible paralysis

Polio mainly affects children under 5 years of age. One of 200 infections leads to irreversible damage to most of the lower extremities. Among paralyzed individuals then 5-10% die from paralysis of the respiratory muscles. No cure for polio exists. Perhaps it is only prevention, through vaccination. Vaccination is done repeatedly and then protect the child throughout life.

With the support of Bill Gates

The World Health Organization (WHO) adopted in 1988 a commitment to the global eradication of polio. This decision is also known for individual countries and the efforts and financial support not only joined other influential organizations (eg. Rotary International), as well as a computer wizard and billionaire Bill Gates. The goal is to protect all children from this horrific disease.

Czechoslovakia was the first in the world

The number of polio cases is due to the introduction of universal vaccination since 1988 fell by more than 99% of the estimated 350,000 cases in more than 125 countries to just 74 cases reported in 2015.

Czechoslovakia in 1960 even became the first country in the world where polio has been eradicated. For comparison: America reported eradication in 1994, and Europe as a whole until 2002. It is estimated that today goes through vaccination (and was therefore protected before paralysis) up to 15 million people and prevent about 1.5 million infant deaths.

Why is it necessary to continue to vaccinate?

Unfortunately, in countries such as Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan are seeded across the board, and the disease is thus among the people continued to spread. Danger is all the more what is easier nowadays to travel and migration. Consider just how many refugees from countries where they are seeded, is now moving freely around Europe. Experts are sounding the alarm, because the polio virus begins to spread again, even in countries where there are no more (eg. Syria and Iraq). And it can happen in our country. Therefore, stay awake on our laurels and will continue to protect our children by vaccination.

Author of the article: Ing. Mgr. Hana Horakova
Source: U lékař

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