Which physical findings are characteristic of paralytic polio caused by enteroviruses?

Updated: Mar 17, 2021
  • Author: Robert A Schwartz, MD, MPH; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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In early-stage disease, reflexes are normally active; a change in the character of reflexes precedes paralysis by 12-24 hours

Superficial reflexes decrease first, followed in 8-24 hours by loss of deep tendon reflexes

Paralysis is flaccid and characteristically asymmetric in distribution, with proximal limb muscles involved more than distal muscles and the lower extremities affected more commonly than the upper extremities

See Clinical Presentation for more detail.

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