Ask The Expert - Do you think polio will ever be eradicated?

Published: August 29, 2013
Sponsored By: Undefined
Session Expert: Paul Offit, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia



Do you think polio will ever be eradicated?

Yes. Although it is apparently going to take much longer than originally hoped.

The reasons for optimism are that it has been eradicated from developing nations and that there are now only three countries (Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Nigeria) that have continued to suffer endemic disease. But the disease has now been eradicated from India, a hopeful sign.

The problem at this point isn’t money or availability of vaccines; it’s political will in the countries that continue to have a problem. The other problem is that the oral polio vaccine viruses can rarely revert to neurovirulent type and can survive in sewage.

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