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July 5, 1995

Will US Polio Immunization Rely on IPV or OPV?

JAMA. 1995;274(1):12-13. doi:10.1001/jama.1995.03530010024008

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A MAJOR CHANGE in pediatric immunization is imminent. Two groups that deal with vaccination policies have concluded that inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV) should be recommended for primary childhood immunization. The object is to avoid the 10 or fewer cases a year of poliomyelitis that are caused by use of the live-virus vaccine.

The schedule likely to be implemented will use the IPV for the first two or three doses, followed by one dose of live oral polio vaccine (OPV) at 18 months and another between 4 and 6 years of age.

A recently developed IPV that has enhanced potency compared with the original Salk vaccine has been available in the United States since 1987. It is recommended for use in immunodeficient children and their families.

However, use of this vaccine in the general population has not been a matter of public policy. But change is in the air. "The balance

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