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To the Editor:—
Dr. Hodes' premise is that the conduction velocity of motor fibers in poliomyelitis patients is reduced, presumably because of selective destruction of large motor neurons. This premise was based on determinations in 26 chronic patients (presumptive diagnosis).Our position is that the conduction velocity in poliomyelitis patients is within normal limits if correction is made for reduced temperatures. Our conclusion was based on a study of 96 patients with acute poliomyelitis (within 6 months of the onset). In 53 of these patients, diagnosis was made with stool isolation of virus or a rise in antibodies in the convalescent sera.Dr. Hodes cites (out of context) 2 of our cases to show that we demonstrated reduced velocities, but he does not mention that these were unilateral in cool extremities in which the reduction in velocity corresponded to the reduction in temperature as compared with the noninvolved extremities—further proof
Johnson EW. Nerve Conduction Velocity-Reply. JAMA. 1961;175(13):1185. doi:10.1001/jama.1961.03040130068026