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A warm welcome from the Lincolnshire Post-Polio Network team. We trust you will find your visit here beneficial. Our site is divided into Library, Networking (including Newsletters) and Directory sections:

 The Library contains over one hundred articles covering Post-Polio Syndrome, The Late Effects of Polio and Post-Polio Sequela amongst a wide range of Post-Polio material. All articles are the full text versions, not abstracts. Some are primarily directed at Medical Professionals while others have been written for the Polio Survivor. All articles are catalogued to assist reading order. In addition there are sections covering Other Post-Polio Libraries on the Internet, Books, Online Journals and Support Group Newsletters. Finally, Library Assistant lists resources that will help you do your own medical article research.

 Networking where you can find out more about The Lincolnshire Post-Polio Network and Our Intentions including How to become a Member of our Network. Don't miss THE LINC-PIN, our bi-monthly newsletter; the latest edition often has articles before they are added to our library. Here you will also find our World-Wide Conference and Seminar Diary.

 The Directory is a catalogue of other resources both on the Internet and elswhere. It is divided into many subsections. The primary Post-Polio subsections include International/National/Local Organizations, Specialist Clinics, Research Institutes and Organisations, Medical Professional Education, Internet Discussion & Support Forums, Polio Survivors on the Internet, Associated and/or Symptomatically Similar Conditions and Polio Virus, Vaccine and Eradication. In addition there are more general subsections covering Pharmaceutical Information, Disability Living, Mental Health, Occupational Therapy, Pain Management, Complimentary Therapies, Neurology, Orthopaedics, Medical/Healthcare Resource Search Facilities and Medical/Healthcare News and Information Services.

Short news items, with a Post-Polio element, gleaned from 'here, there and everywhere'

Finally, you are encouraged to bookmark our What's New? or Change History page. It will provide a quick route to any new or changed information when you visit us again as we hope you will. It also has details of our EMAIL UPDATE NOTIFICATION SERVICE in which we send you brief details of new or changed articles, resources etc at the time they are applied to our web site.

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We are a Non-Profit Organisation and a UK Registered Charity (No. 1064177). All our work including this web site is funded from subscriptions and donations. Our policy is to provide as much free information as we can within copyright laws, but we are only able to do this through the generosity of our members and benefactors. Without them the Lincolnshire Post-Polio Network and this web site would not exist. We are also indebited to organisations and individual authors who have given us permission to reproduce their articles and papers.

What is PPS?

The following is a brief but concise overview of Post-Polio Syndrome. For an overview of medical terminology used to describe Post-Polio conditions see Terminology, also by the author of this overview. For articles and papers covering a range of post-polio medical conditions including PPS please call in at our Online Library

Post-Polio Syndrome, or PPS, is a name that has been adopted to indicate a constellation of NEW symptoms that occur an average of 31 years -- generally ranging from 20 to 40 years -- after the onset of the initial polio infection and after a period of "recovery" of at least 10 years.

These symptoms often include NEW weakness, pain, breathing and/or swallowing difficulties, a variety of sleep disorders, muscle twitching (known as "fasiculations"), gastrointestinal problems, muscle fatigue and/or "central" fatigue. And these symptoms can occur in previously-affected muscles and/or in what were previously thought to be muscles that were not affected at onset.

Complications often include neuropathies, nerve entrapments, arthritis, scoliosis, osteoporosis and, sometimes, additional atrophy -- known as Post-Polio Muscular Atrophy (PPMA).

There are no definitive tests to determine a diagnosis of PPS -- so it is done by history and ruling out other possible causes that mimic these symptoms. Those who were most affected by the virus at initial onset AND who made the best recovery seem to have the worst PPS symptoms later on.

And no certain cause for this condition has been found. There is known to be a failure at the neuromuscular junction -- and probably the most popularly-held theory is that nerves and/or muscles that have been "overworked" are failing prematurely.

There is also known to be an impairment in the production of various hormones and neurotransmitters -- but the cause of that reduction is also unknown: perhaps due to damage to the central nervous system done by the virus? Or lack of "normal" feedback now to the brain by nerves and/or muscles?

Onset of PPS is usually gradual, over a period of years -- but sometimes abrupt, with major losses of function suffered over several months or a couple of years. Onset often occurs after a physical or emotional trauma, illness or accident.

Tom Walter - A Polio Survivor

For several decades there has been a tendency to require a history of paralytic polio before any diagnosis of PPS will be considered. Such a pre-requisite is not supported by medical papers written in the 1950's and earlier that report evidence of a level of neuronal damage by the polio virus that does not present any clinical signs of paralysis at the time of infection. Hence, a history of non-paralytic polio does not preclude new PPS symptoms or a diagnosis of PPS when all other possible conditions have been excluded. For a detailed explanation read Non-Paralytic Polio and PPS by Marcia Falconer, Ph.D. cell biology and Eddie Bollenbach, M.A. biology.

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The Lincolnshire Post-Polio Network takes great care in the transcription of all information that appears at this site. However, we do not accept liability for any damage resulting directly or otherwise from any errors introduced in the transcription. Neither do we accept liability for any damage resulting directly or otherwise from the information available at this site. The opinions expressed in the documents available at this site are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily constitute endorsement or approval by the Lincolnshire Post-Polio Network.

© Copyright The Lincolnshire Post-Polio Network 1997 1998 1999 2000

Document preparation: Chris Salter, Original Think-tank, Cornwall, United Kingdom.
Document Reference: <URL:>
Last modification: 25th February 2000

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