Featured Science and Innovations
The Culture of Polio
Polio was surrounded by stigma. Once recovered, survivors faced discrimination because of their lingering disabilities. As a result, many survivors today refuse to discuss their polio or acknowledge having had it. Even President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, one of the most famous people with polio, took pains to conceal his condition. Concerned with "passing," polio survivors tend to be stubborn "type A" personalities that are driven for success -- pushing themselves physically, working longer and harder, determined not to let their disabilities get the best of them. The most driven polio survivors are the most likely to develop postpolio syndrome later in life: they've simply burned themselves out.