Dr. Henry writes about Pain & Temperature Perception


The perception of pain, temperature, touch, and propriaception (or one's position in space like standing still with your arms outstretched, eyes closed and still have ability to touch your nose with your forefinger, one of the tests for drunkeness) are all functions of the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord). The polio virus attacked the central nervous system and may have done more damage to this system than originally thought because of the great recoveries. For example, some polio victims in the acute phase had incontinence or had urinary retention and required temporary catheterization. President Roosevelt was catheterized for about two weeks by wife Eleanor with a glass catheter and amazingly did not get a bladder infection. The virus attacked the gastrointestinal system. Post mortem exams of victims prior to Salk often revealed brain involvement (basal ganglia and reticular activating system) beyond the brain stem (where swallowing and breathing centers are located), and thus I believe we PPSers are vulnerable to a variety of CNS symptoms as is daily expressed on the various postings here. Circulation only effects temp when there is an impairment of circulation as occurs when one has a vessel occlusion or even after death. External coldness can gradually slow circulation and lead to eventual circulatory problems and death as being frozen.

I have noticed on this list service that some have various sensitivity problems such as reduced perpheral [sic] sensation of the skin and the opposite such as burning sensation of the skin. Some complain of blurred vision, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), reduced taste, swallowing problems, breathing problems, all kinds of motor and pain problems and some spasms or twitching of various muscles. I believe we are vulnerable to any symptom that is stimulated by the CNS. I believe that Salk and Sabin put an end to the natural history of polio or the study of polio's complete pathogenesis. Some reseachers such as Richard Bruno are developing theories about these many symptoms and their relatedness to the original infection.

Enough said for now.

Henry Holland
Richmond, Virginia, USA

5th February 1997

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