Poliomyelitis (polio) is a disease of the central nervous system with potential to cause a paralysis. The virus is transmitted through food or water contaminated by infected human faeces or by direct contact with an infectious person.
Cases of polio still occur in some African and Asian countries.
Most individuals (about 95 percent) who acquire polio do not develop symptoms. When they do occur symptoms may range from a mild illness with fever, to symptoms of meningitis (inflammation of the lining of the brain) or paralysis.
An effective vaccination against polio is available. In addition to vaccination travellers should ensure good personal hygiene and follow advice on prevention of food and water-borne diseases.
*Vaccine most effective if given time to become active. Some immunity will be provided for this vaccine if given up to the day before travel.