By Stephen Pate
If you have Post Polio Syndrome (PPS), it’s vital to exercise moderately every second day to keep the muscles we have and avoid obesity, diabetes, stroke and heart disease.
Exercise also helps us accomplish more of those activities of daily living and can improve how we feel.
Question: What type of brace would you recommend for a post-polio patient with poor strength in the thigh muscles? We are in New Hampshire, USA.
Answer: As for your patient, I am going to break down my remarks into two sections, depending on some of the characteristics of your patient. Since your email said your patient had muscle weakness in the thigh, I am assuming you mean quadriceps, and perhaps hamstring weakness, but suspect your patient may also have some weakness of hip muscles and possibly even of some muscles in the lower leg.
This set of sample exercises for polio survivors was prepared by Christy Osborn, PT, DPT of Bay Cliff Health Camp in Big Bay, Michigan.
I contracted polio as child age 12 from the live virus vaccine. Several years ago I was diagnosed with PPS. Later in the US Army age 19 I was given a polio vaccination. What would have happened to me? What would have the side effects been? Enhanced PPS? Are there any studies on this situation?
Marny Eulberg, MD, polio survivor and a family physician who has run a post polio clinic since 1985.
Selma H. Calmes, MD, anesthesiologist (retired), Olive View/UCLA Medical Center, Sylmar, California