Polio from Changing a Diaper? You Won’t Believe This Dangerous Drug Case

It is hard to believe a diaper could cause polio. But there are several such cases of parents contracting polio from changing their babies’ soiled nappies. Polio is a viral disease that affects the spinal cord leading to paralysis or muscle weakness.

The virus gets in the body through the mouth after one’s hand is contaminated with an infected baby’s stool. It is common in children and occurs if there is poor hygiene. Paralysis is a common occurrence and may turn out severe if older people are affected.

Who Can Get Infected?

Anyone can get polio from changing diapers. The number of infections has been increasing rapidly in the United States since the introduction of the polio vaccine. For instance, a man from Staten Island in New York contracted polio thirty years ago after changing her daughter’s diaper who had been given an oral polio vaccine.

He filed a lawsuit against the vaccine giver two years later, contracting polio with claims that the live vaccine passed through her daughter’s system where he got infected. The infection has caused him to lose his job as he was paralyzed and had to spend months in the intensive care unit. He is partially paralyzed and bound to his wheelchair to this day.

Defective drug lawyers held the vaccine makers liable for the man’s injuries for manufacturing a dangerous drug and failing to warn doctors on the polio vaccine’s risks. After a thirty-year-long legal battle, he was awarded millions as compensation for his injuries and disability.

Another case is of a doctor in Ireland administering polio vaccine to a child, and the father ended up infected. After being sued to a High Court, the doctor said he had routinely notified the child’s parents of the risks. He had also recommended observing high standard hygiene during diaper change and disposal.

He admitted to not being clear on his warnings believing the parents would ask any question if they did not understand any information. He says if he had told the parents they are at risk of contracting polio when they come into close contact with their child, it would scare them; instead, he admitted to softening his warning to encourage them to administer the child’s vaccine.

During cross-examination, the court found out that the child’s father was not vaccinated for polio as her daughter received her polio vaccine. The doctor defended himself, saying the polio vaccine was live and would remain in the child’s stools for about six weeks. The parents had to be careful during a diaper change and maintaining high personal hygiene after disposal.

Symptoms of Polio

A more significant percentage of people do not show any symptoms after contracting polio. However, they can still spread the viral disease to others. The symptoms may take about six to twenty days to appear. Different types of polio have varied symptoms.

1. Nonparalytic Polio

The viral disease does not lead to paralysis. Its symptoms are flu-like and mild. They include:

  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Fatigue
  • Fever
2. Paralytic Syndrome

It is a severe type of polio disease. The early signs of paralytic polio are headache and fever. After some days, other symptoms may include:

  • Severe muscle pain and weakness
  • Floppy and lose limbs
  • Loss of reflexes.
3. Post-polio Syndrome

Post-polio syndrome is a series of disabling symptoms that affect people years after contracting polio. The signs include:

  • Fatigue
  • Intolerance to cold temperatures
  • Muscle wasting
  • Progressive joint pain and weakness.

Yes, you could take polio from a simple diaper change, as the cases of the Staten Island man or the Irish father have shown. But unfortunately, your child’s doctor is unlikely to warn you against the risks due to either ignorance or financial incentives to get your child vaccinated. Polio may leave you paralyzed, disabled, or even dead.

So, if you or a loved one contracted polio from a vaccine, talk to a seasoned team of defective product attorneys, like the Morelli civil litigation lawyers. Both the drugmaker and the negligent doctor can be held liable for your injuries and loss, even if it might take years to do so.