P.P.S. In Under Two Minutes
by David Graham, revised by Elinor Young
Have you tried to explain post-polio syndrome to a friend, then half way through you notice them nodding off? Try this two minute drill.
Our brain communicates with our muscles through the nerves. Polio destroys these nerve cells causing our muscles to die.
The beautiful thing about nerves is that they help each other. When one goes down others help out, so a person can lose many nerve cells and not experience much dysfunction.
Most polio survivors have been living in this state of fewer cells for years. If they were very young when they contracted polio they may have grown up thinking this was normal.
All people's nerve cells die off with age. For the normal person, having many nerve cells, this is not a problem. For those of us that have been living with a reduced number of nerve cells, this can result in a variety of symptoms including weakness, fatigue and pain.