Beyond the Book: Background information when reading Warm Springs

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Warm Springs

Traces of a Childhood at FDR's Polio Haven

by Susan Richards Shreve

Warm Springs
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  • First Published:
    Jun 2007, 224 pages
    Jun 2008, 240 pages

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Poliomyelitis, more commonly known as Polio, is a viral disease that has plagued humans since ancient times. It is transmitted primarily through direct fecal-oral contact. However, it can also be transmitted by indirect contact with infectious saliva or feces or by contaminated sewage or water.

In over 90% of cases there are no symptoms but in those who show symptoms the illness takes three forms: Abortive polio in which people experience mild flu-like symptoms; a more serious form called nonparalytic polio in which a person experiences sensitivity to light and neck stiffness; and then there is the severe, debilitating form known as paralytic polio in which...

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