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Polio Research Papers

Polio research papers trace the history of the disease and its irradication in the United States. Paper Masters can custom write a research paper on Polio that focuses on any aspect of the disease, from the medical manifestation to the historical significance of its irradication. Get help from our writers today.

Polio is an infectious disease caused by the poliovirus. Its official name is “poliomyelitis” and was once known as infantile paralysis. The disease has existed for thousand of years, and frequently left victims paralyzed. In the 1950s, Dr. Jonas Salk discovered the polio vaccine, which has led to the near eradication of the disease in most of the world, although cases still occur in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.

Thanks to vaccination campaigns around the world, the following facts are evidence of its managability:

  • Americas were declared polio free in 1994
  • Europe was polio free in 2002
  • The WHO hopes to completely eradicate polio globally by 2018
  • Polio remains endemic in only Nigeria, Pakistan and Afghanistan.
  • Unfortunately many cases have broken out in Syria as the result of the civil war, which broke out in 2012.

PolioMany case of polio result only in temporary paralysis, with complete recovery in six to eight months. Perhaps the most famous case of polio was U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who contracted polio as an adult and never walked again. The President became the nexus for public interest in the existence of the disease and the suffering of its victims.  Roosevelt was himself involved in the formation of the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis. In 1938 Roosevelt announced the formation of a nonpartisan group to be called the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis.  Its major aims, he said, were to find the cure for polio while providing the best treatment for those already afflicted.

President Roosevelt had successfully struggled with the disease as an adult, fighting the stigma associated with being an adult suffering from a disease that was typically known to target children. While Roosevelt was handicapped, he fought hard to hide his condition from the public so that he could maintain a strong and dignified presence that would facilitate his public office.  With the knowledge that the President suffered from the disease, polio could no longer be regarded as a condition that only attacked children or one that could be avoided through cleanliness.

However, a connection with FDR both helped and hindered development of the Foundation.  While Roosevelt was loved by much of the populace, he was also despised by many for his “firestorm”-causing political decisions, such as his “failed attempts to pack the U.S. Supreme Court in 1937 and purge reactionaries from Democratic ranks a year later”.  As a result, many of his political opponents refused to donate to a charity so strongly supported by his office, while some attempted to claim that he was using the charity for personal gain.  Amid financial challenges generated by a connection with President Roosevelt, charity strategists chose to adopt a partisan agenda, with “FDR remaining the inspiration for the polio battle but no longer its guiding force”.

The poliovirus (PV), it must be noted, occurs only in human beings, and is highly contagious through fecal-oral or oral-oral transmission routes. There is no cure for polio. However, the polio vaccine emerged in the 1950s, first by Jonas Salk and later by Albert Sabin. These polio vaccines provide complete immunity from the disease, but require several doses in order to prove effective.

 

Related Research Paper Topics

Epidemic - In 1952 the infectious viral disease known as Polio reached a peak in the United States.

Pan American Health Organization - Historically, the PAHO committed major effort to the eradication of polio in the Americas, a goal set in 1985 and reached in 1994.

Immunization of Children Research Papers discuss the issue of childhood vaccination in terms of economics and the impact of the ability of the public health system to give the right vaccines to all that should have them.

Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria - Viral pathogens have not been as successful, except for vaccines, which were responsible for almost eliminating polio and smallpox.