Polio Gets Detected in Brazil

Since 1994, it has happened for the first time that the polio virus has been found in Brazil. Revealing the information on Monday, the World Health Organization, stated that the virus was detected in a sewage sample taken from Viracopos International Airport near Campinas, in southeastern Brazil.

The sample collected in March has matched with a strain lately found in Equatorial Guinea on the central African coast. For now, no case of paralysis has been reported. Around 95% of Brazilian children are immunized against polio.

Therefore, the WHO thinks it is quite unlikely that the virus will spread. For now, the WHO has not levied any restrictions on travel to and from the country. Poliomyelitis (polio) occurs due to a virus that can lead to paralysis and in severe cases death can also take place.

The virus affects nervous system of a person hence, making him paralytic from the limbs. Polio is quite a contagious virus and is found in throat and intestines of infected people. The virus can spread from infected feces, sneeze and cough droplets.

In 1955, polio vaccine was developed by Jonas Salk. With the use of it, polio was eradicated in the United States. Last case of polio witnessed in the US was in 1979. Though most of the countries in the world are free from polio, exceptions include certain Middle Eastern and African nations.

"It is important to clarify that this detection does not mean any change in the epidemiological situation of Brazil or a threat to the elimination of the disease", said the Brazilian Health Ministry.

The last national immunization campaign in Brazil took place in 2013, said the WHO and it also thinks that the high immunity rate has prevented the transmission. As per the assessment of the WHO, spread of the virus in Brazil is very low.