Polio is a serious viral infection that used to be common in the UK and worldwide. It's rare nowadays because it can be prevented with vaccination.
Most people with polio don't have any symptoms and won't know they're infected. But for up to 1 in 100 people, the polio virus causes temporary or permanent Paralysis , which can be life-threatening.
Cases of polio in the UK fell dramatically when routine vaccination was introduced in the mid-1950s.
There hasn't been a case of polio caught in the UK since 1984, although the infection is still found in some parts of the world and there remains a very small risk that it could be brought back to the UK.
There's no cure for polio, so it's important to make sure that you and your children are fully vaccinated against it.
This page covers:
Symptoms of polio
Long-term problems caused by polio
How do you get polio?
Where is polio found?
Read about polio, including what the symptoms are, how it's spread, where it's found and the polio vaccination.
About 95% of 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
Although polio often passes quickly without causing any other problems, it can sometimes lead to persistent or lifelong difficulties. About 1 in every 200 people with the infection will have some deg
You can become infected with the polio virus if you come into contact with the poo (faeces) of someone with the infection, or with the droplets launched into the air when they cough or sneeze. You ca
As a result of routine vaccination programmes, polio has been largely wiped out in most parts of the world. Areas declared polio-free by the World Health Organization (WHO) include Europe, the Americ
There's currentlyno cure for polio.Treatmentfocuses on supporting bodily functions and reducing the risk of long-term problems while the body fights offthe infection. This can include bed rest in hos
The polio vaccination is offered as part of the NHS routine childhood vaccination programme . It's given by injection in five separate doses. These are normally given at: eight,12 and16 weeks of