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September 1, 1962


JAMA. 1962;181(9):784. doi:10.1001/jama.1962.03050350046012

Tonsillectomy does not cause increased susceptibility to bulbar paralysis in poliomyelitis after the first month, according to a study from Seattle reported in the May issue of the American Journal of Diseases of Children.1 Ravenholt has presented convincing evidence that bulbar paralysis is not more frequent in tonsillectomized patients. The data from 2 poliomyelitis epidemics in Seattle are compared—1 in 1952, the other in 1959. In each year the incidence of the bulbar form of poliomyelitis is no greater in tonsillectomized patients than it would be by chance.

Previous reports on this association were not supported by age-specific data. Ravenholt states that age per se or some age-related factor is of greater importance in the occurrence of the bulbar form. In this respect, only 1 case with bulbar paralysis out of 30 paralytic cases was found below the age of 5, but 12 cases out of 30 in the

Ravenholt, R. T.:  Poliomyelitis Paralysis and Tonsillectomy Reconsidered ,  Amer J Dis Child 103:658-668 ( (May) ) 1962.