the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) announced that they had found poliovirus in wastewater samples from two counties, Orange County and Rockland County, in June and July.

New York Polio Update:Hundreds May Be Infected, Based On Wastewater Findings In 2 Counties

This water polio announcement came two weeks after the NYSDOH had announced on July 21 that an unvaccinated adult in Rockland County had gotten infected with the poliovirus and as a result became paralyzed. If you are wondering, “hmmm, polio, I don’t get it,” that’s because the U.S. was declared polio-free in 1979. That declaration came after years of public health efforts to get the U.S. population vaccinated against this dangerous and potentially deadly virus. Yet, such reappearance of the poliovirus in New York raises more concerns that continuing anti-vaccination campaigns may be setting our country back many decades and laying to waste all the hard work that had gotten the U.S. polio-free in the first place.

This Rockland County case was the first confirmed polio case in New York state since 1990 and the first confirmed one in all of the U.S. since 2013. Those previous cases were travelers who had gotten infected abroad. Finding the virus in wastewater in various locations in two different New York state counties over two months makes this a more poopy situation in more ways than one. It suggests that people have been pooping out the virus for a while with an emphasis on the word “people,” as in more than one person. It’s probably unlikely that one person infected with the polio virus has been toilet hopping in New York state, running around using different random toilets in the two counties. According to the NYSDOH announcement, finding the virus now in three wastewater samples from Rockland County and four samples from Orange County provides “further evidence of local not international transmission of a polio virus that can cause paralysis and potential community spread.” In other words, the virus could be spreading in the U.S. once again. Oh, joy.

And here’s another thing that may get you to fall off of your stool: there may be hundreds of people infected with the virus already. Yep, as you can see in the following tweet, New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett warned, “Based on earlier polio outbreaks, New Yorkers should know that for every one case of paralytic polio observed, there may be hundreds of other people infected” This one-to-hundreds estimate comes from the observation that about 72 out of every hundred people who are infected with the virus won’t end up having any visible symptoms, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). And about 25 out of every hundred will only have two to five days of flu-like symptoms such as fever, sore throat, fatigue, nausea, headache, and stomach pain. You can imagine that most people having such flu-like symptoms won’t automatically say, “OMG, I may have polio” and go see a doctor to get diagnosed.

Source: This news is originally published by forbes

By Web Team

Technology Times Web team handles all matters relevant to website posting and management.