Ann Laidlaw, MD, Post-Polio Clinic University of Michigan
"PPS, What We are Seeing and What We are Doing"
Dr. Ann Laidlaw presented the history of polio.
Suggested that the estimates of the number of polio survivors in Michigan and the United States is low.
Demonstrated the need to have a proper diagnosis made by a physician knowledgeable in polio and post-polio syndrome. That this diagnosis is one of exclusion where no medical, orthopedic or neurological issues can explain the fatigue, weakness and muscle pain associated with patient symptoms.
Stated that there is no specific treatment or cure for PPS.
Reminded us to conserve energy.
Listed comorbidities to PPS due to leg length discrepancy, wear and tear on the joints, nerve compression, tendonitis, and bursitis.
There are no known medications for the fatigue, pain or weakness from Post-Polio Syndrome.
Thank you Dr. Laidlaw for your wonderful insight, information and interest in our group of polio survivors.
"New Material, New Technology, New Challenges"
As a polio survivor, Mark Taylor knows first hand what is involved in bracing, wearing a brace and the challenges of a good fitting for the brace to be worn and a complement to the wearer.
Orthotic considerations include: assessment, design, material choices, and proper fitting.
Orthotic challenges for the orthotist include but are not limited to a leg length discrepancy, fused bones and joints, and stressed joints.
A successful fit includes the control of unwasted motions that can cause joint stress and will the brace create a new risk or do damage or harm to the limb and person using the orthotics.
A person needing a brace may experience first an ache or pain in a polio affected limb or joint. Secondly the body has compensated for the abnormal gait or joint. Thirdly as we age, compensations are not made as easily or at all by the body.
Bracing must have all of the following components by both the patient and orthotist: commitment, communication, patience, taking small steps until the brace slowly feels comfortable, have follow up visits to make modifications and more communication.
A sincere Thank you to Mark Taylor for a fine presentation, good humor and a comfortable fit to our conference.
"Anesthesia Concerns for Post-Polio Survivors"
Dr. Walny has noticed that polio survivors have a sensitivity to depolarizing drugs due to weak muscles.
At times, polio survivors may experience central and/or peripheral fatigue after anesthesia.
Depolarizing drugs should not be used on polio survivors due to a possible increase in potassium concentrations which can result in heart problems.
NO SUCCINYL CHOLINE SHOULD BE USED IN POLIO PATIENTS. Muscles are already compromised and this further depolarizes muscles.
Regional or local anesthetics should be used when possible to avoid gastro-intestinal complications.
Muscular weakness and where they are weak should be considered in all patients when given anesthesia.
Many questions were answered by Dr. Walny from the audience on the safety of today's anesthesia. Dr. Walny reiterated that today the best and safest drugs are being used when surgeries are performed.
Thank you Dr. Walny for your presentation at our conference.
"Brace Maintenance and Care"
Tamara spent her time discussing the care and maintenance of braces. This fun-filled presentation not only instructed those present with the proper care and maintenance of braces, be they plastic or carbon fibers, leather or metal, but Tamara was able to show and tell the common practices she has seen at the clinic when a polio survivor tries to fix and repair broken and cracked devices.
Common household glue, duct tape,screws and other materials not supplied by a certified orthotist should never be used on braces. Legs and bodies and arms are not as stable when home remedies are used to repair braces.
Her words showed us how important communication and expertise are when dealing with brace maintenance and repair.
When the valcro wears out and no longer sticks together, take your brace in to have new valcro put on.
Wearing many hats, Tamara is a board member, vendor for our conference and an interesting speaker who filled in on a last minute request when Dr. Mike Kossove was unable to attend the conference. Thank you Tamara for your interest in our group. We love you sincerely.