Polio Place

A service of Post-Polio Health International

muscles

Canes - Pick the Right Stick

A cane may be adequate if you need minimal support. First determine the correct length of the cane. If it is too long and your elbow stays bent when you lean on the cane, the triceps muscle at the back of the elbow has to stay contracted. This can lead to muscle fatigue and pain in your shoulder.

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Of Canes and Crutches

Have you thought about using a cane or crutch but dismissed the idea because you’d be self-conscious? Think you'll look "disabled"? Figure that you’ve gotten along okay without walking aids so far, so why start now?

Good question.I know that feeling well and talked about it in “Facing Reality.”

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Canes

Are you afraid to be in crowds because you may fall if someone bumps you? Does your “good” leg hurt because it holds most of our weight? Try a cane. Here are a few tips on selecting and using a cane, which you can make yourself or purchase at a local drug store/medical supply store. Some insurance plans will cover the cost of a cane.

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Pregnancy

Example 1: A 33-year-old lady (2011) who had polio is pregnant for the first time. She describes her acute illness and recovery and requests advice:

"I had polio when I was 7 months old and was paralyzed throughout my whole body. My parents told me that they fed me using a spoon and a dropper. I could not sit up by myself when I was 4-5 years old, so they put pillows around me. I had surgery on my Achilles heel by physicians from the San Diego Children’s Hospital who came to my home in Tijuana. They also gave me braces on both of my legs.

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Muscle Power Evaluation And Therapeutic Chart (MPET Chart)

AN EFFECTIVE TOOL IN POST-POLIO MANAGEMENT
Mahboon ur Rahman, Peshawar, Pakistan

Brief Description of Work: Muscle power of polio-afflicted children were assisted and evaluated by Oxford Muscle Testing Chart. The chart as a diagnostic tool gives strength of muscles for the purpose of surgical interventions or physical regime.

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Evaluation Suggestions

To evaluate for post-polio syndrome, one must establish that an individual had paralytic polio and that current symptoms are due to the aftereffects of the remote polio and not due to other medical, orthopedic, or neurologic conditions. A comprehensive evaluation is done by a physician with input from members of a health care team who are experienced in the assessment and management of individuals who have neuromuscular diseases and/or functional limitations.

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Anesthesia

Modern anesthesia has become extremely safe, but many survivors fear it because of reports of problems during and after anesthesia. Potential problems include a greater sensitivity to the paralyzing drugs (muscle relaxants), possible need for mechanical ventilation after surgery, and pain problems after surgery. All survivors, especially those with a history of respiratory involvement, need to tell their surgeon and anesthesiologist about having had polio (Calmes, 1997).

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Anesthesia and colonoscopy

Selma H. Calmes MD, Retired Anesthesiologist

Many polio patients fear anesthesia. Multiple surgeries in childhood were common for those who had polio and anesthesia care then was not as sophisticated as it is today. Modern anesthesia is much improved since the time of polio epidemics! In this session, an anesthesiologist familiar with modern anesthesia practice and polio will answer recent, common questions asked by post-polio patients. If time, the audience can ask their own questions.

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Pain

Pain can be due to any number of factors ranging from very benign to quite serious. Polio survivors who are experiencing pain should undergo a comprehensive medical evaluation to diagnose its cause. Pain is most often due to overuse of muscles, tendons, ligaments and/or joints, and primary interventions are directed at alleviating or eliminating the overuse factors.

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Basic Beginning Exercise for Polio Survivors and More

David Guy, MS, CPT USA (ret). Guy is a retired physical therapist who has worked in multiple settings from the Army to universities. He has worked with polio survivors throughout his career. He now helps out with a polio support group in Arizona.

“Exercise admonitions: Take these exercises to your doctor and ask your doctor if it is all right for you to complete this routine.

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