TRAVEL & IMMUNISATION CLINIC

POLIO

What is Polio?

Poliomyelitis (polio) is a potentially paralysing, vaccine preventable, viral infection. The virus is transmitted through food or water contaminated by infected human faeces or by direct contact with an infectious person.

 

Most individuals (about 95 percent) who acquire polio do not develop symptoms. When they do occur symptoms may range from a mild illness with fever, to symptoms of meningitis (inflammation of the lining of the brain) or paralysis. Although paralysis occurs in less than one percent of infections it is frequently long lasting.

Signs & Symptoms

  • Most people with polio won't have any symptoms and will fight off the infection without even realising they were infected.

  • A small number of people will experience a flu-like illness 3 to 21 days after they're infected.

  • Symptoms can include:

  • A high temperature (fever) of 38C (100.4F) or above

  • sore throat 

  • headache

  • Abdominal (tummy) pain

  • Aching muscles

  • Feeling and being sick

  • These symptoms will usually pass within about a week.

  • In a small number of cases, the polio virus attacks the nerves in the spine and base of the brain. This can cause paralysis, usually in the legs, that develops over hours or days.

  • The paralysis isn't usually permanent, and movement will often slowly return over the next few weeks and months.

  • But some people are left with persistent problems. If the breathing muscles are affected, it can be life threatening.

Locations

Polio is a significant problem in Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan, and there's a potential risk of infection in other parts of Africa and some Middle Eastern countries.

Prevention

If you're planning to travel to a polio-affected country, you should get vaccinated if you've not been fully vaccinated before or have a booster dose if it's been 10 years or more since your last dose of the vaccine.

Nisha Berry MRPharmS IP

Nisha is a highly experienced clinical pharmacist, with extra qualifications in travel-vaccinations. She completed her degree at the University of Aston, and has since worked at and managed a variety of busy community pharmacies across London and Essex. She has also completed her post-graduate training and is a qualified independent prescriber.
Nisha is the clinic lead for our Travel Clinic, and she will be responsible for the prescription and delivery of all vaccinations.

WHAT WILL WE PROVIDE

Free Consultation and Travel Advice with an experienced Pharmacist

A Comprehensive Range of Vaccinations and Aftercare

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