Listen to the Voices of Polio

Voices of Polio

Enjoy reading these stories. If you would like to add your own, please do so at the bottom of any page.


  1. I contracted polio the summer of 1952 at the age of five, as did two other kids in the neighborhood. Mom said they packed me in ice to bring my fever down. I remember being held down for a spinal tap, then being put into a tall crib. I hated spending time in the whirlpool alone. I had physical therapy on my left leg and foot once a week for a year after I was released from the hospital. For the next few years, it seemed that I was always spraining my left ankle as it was weak. My left foot was always a size smaller than my right, but I didn’t start wearing two different size shoes until I was in my 40’s. Walking was my exercise until about 10-15 years ago when on a walk one day, my calf completely locked up, as if to say, “that’s enough. You can’t do this anymore.” Since I was no longer walking for exercise, I gradually started to gain weight. I’m still working on weight loss. A few years ago, I had surgery (five procedures) done on my foot to relieve pain and resolve some other issues. However, my toes all curl under now, and I have little feeling in the front half of my foot. I wear toe covers on two of my toes. Now I have noticed that I am losing muscle on my inner calf. My leg tires more easily, and climbing stairs or stepping up on a curb is difficult with my left foot and leg. I often wake up at night with cramps or spasms in my calf.
    I realize that I was one of the luckier polio survivors, and am so grateful for that, but wanted to share my story anyway. Thanks for listening, and God bless all of you who are experiencing PPS.

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