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from The Atlantic

What America Looked Like: Polio Children Paralyzed in Iron Lungs

What America Looked Like: Polio Children Paralyzed in Iron Lungs - Brian Resnick - The Atlantic

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Iron lungs sit unused in an abandoned state hospital somewhere in the US. There are a handful of people left in the US who these machines, and now no company will provide parts or service for them. Yet these sit here, and probably still work. http://www.pprg.org/index.php?option=com_content=article=76%3Airon-lung-crisis=35%3Aresource-articles=58

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Iron lungs. The polio epidemic. (My mom had polio as a child, a lasting trauma. )

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20 Vintage Photos of Iron Lungs for Polio Victims From Between the 1930s and 1950s

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from art.com

Nurses at Children's Hospital Tending Young Polio Patients Contained in Iron Lung Room

LIFE photograph. children w/ polio in iron lung machine. look at little girl's dolly pinned up next to her...

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This photo, taken in March 1940, shows a Polio patient in an iron lung at the Scots Mission Hospital in Tiberias, Palestine. Polio often weakened the muscles used in breathing to the point where an iron lung kept the patient alive.

Ward full of people in iron lungs from polio. I read the other day there are still a few hundred people in the US in iron lung machines, mostly in their homes.

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“Instructing nurses on the use of respirator for a polio patient” 1958. Unknown photographer/location, via National Archives. These iron lungs would soon be obsolete, thanks to Dr. Salk.

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Rows of irons lungs filled hospital wards at the height of the polio outbreaks of the 1940s and 1950s. Polio vaccination programs have virtually eradicated new cases of poliomyelitis in the United States. Because of this, and also the development of modern ventilators and widespread use of tracheal intubation and tracheotomy, the iron lung has virtually disappeared from modern medicine. For example, in 1959, there were 1,200 people using tank respirators in the United States, but by 2004…

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Nurses Gertrude Sidow Susan Felchlin trying out a portable iron lung, Seattle, 1940.

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