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October 21, 1939


JAMA. 1939;113(17):1561-1563. doi:10.1001/jama.1939.72800420001008

Little has been written on pregnancy complicated by acute anterior poliomyelitis. This is especially true of case reports that were followed to term and through parturition. One of the most recent articles on this subject was published in July 1933 by Brahdy and Lenarsky,1 in which three cases were reported which were followed post partum. The summary of eight previous cases was also given. It is likely that a few other similar cases may not have been reported. Nevertheless, the incidence of epidemic poliomyelitis during pregnancy is probably rare.

This case is of particular interest not only because of the unusual and hazardous complications of gestation but also because of the many problems which were encountered relative to the disease process per se. Some of the questions for consideration were (1) viability and effect of this disease on the fetus, (2) the antiviral power of the fetus toward this