The Research Fund's Second Award

Reports and updates from the second grant recipient.

Final Report: Women with Polio: Menopause, Late Effects, Life Satisfaction and Emotional Distress

The final report, in pdf format, presents the results of a nationwide study of the effects of aging on the lives of polio survivors comparing the problems of men and women. (Be patient; because of the size of the report, there may be a several second delay as it loads.)

PRESS RELEASE from PHI, August 26, 2004
Contact: Joan L. Headley, 314-534-0475,
New Study Reports Post-polio Women Experience Menopause Differently than Nondisabled Peers

SAINT LOUIS, MISSOURI - Women with late effects of polio experience menopause differently than their non-disabled peers - physiologically, physically and psychologically - according to a new study funded by Post-Polio Health International, headquartered here.

A team of researchers from the University of Michigan Health System in Ann Arbor conducted a nationwide study to explore the experience of menopause for the 500,000 women in the US with a history of polio. To highlight the unique contribution of menopause, men with a history of polio also participated and served as a control group.

In their final report "Women with Polio: Menopause, Late Effects, Life Satisfaction and Emotional Distress," the researchers present significant findings:

"This study provides the first solid evidence that post-polio women experience menopause differently," said Joan L. Headley, Post-Polio Health International executive director. "Post-polio women should educate themselves and their health care providers about the differences in their experiences. While there is much more to be learned about menopause in the context of disability, this study is an important first step toward future generations of menopause studies that no longer ignore women with disabilities."

Researchers Claire Z. Kalpakjian, PhD, principal investigator and project director, and Denise G. Tate, PhD, co-principal investigator, both from the University's Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, and Elisabeth H. Quint, MD, co-investigator, from the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, studied almost 1,000 post-polio women, aged 34 to 99 from 49 states during 2003.

"Of the 30 million women with physical disabilities in the United States, more than 16 million are over the age of 50, constituting a large and growing population of women who have been relatively understudied with regards to the psychological and physical experience of menopause," the researchers said. "Women with disabilities in general have long been neglected in rehabilitation research. As such, little is known about the unique biological milestones women experience as they age and the interaction of physical disability and these biological changes."

The complete report is available on Post-Polio Health International's website, (click on Research). Post-Polio Health International actively promotes education, research, advocacy and networking among the post-polio community to enhance the lives and independence of polio survivors and home ventilator users. Its Research Fund was established in 1995 to seek scientific information leading to eventual amelioration of the consequences of poliomyelitis and/or neuromuscular respiratory diseases.

UPDATE, reported in Post-Polio Health, Summer 2003
UPDATE, reported in Post-Polio Health, Winter 2004
PRESS RELEASE from GINI (now PHI), November 2002

Additional contributions are needed to increase the corpus of The Research Fund so larger grants can be awarded.

"Contributing to the Fund is an excellent way to honor loved ones," says Joan Headley, Executive Director of PHI & IVUN.

Tax-deductible donations can be sent to:

Post-Polio Health International (PHI)
4207 Lindell Boulevard, #110, Saint Louis, Missouri 63108-2915 USA

Checks should be made payable to "Post-Polio Health International" (US dollars only).
PHI also accepts VISA, MasterCard and Discover.

Connect here for ways to donate to The Research Fund

To offer "Gifts-in-Kind" sponsorships, or to ask about the needs of PHI, contact Joan L. Headley, Executive Director, at 314-534-0475 or

PHI's Federal I.D. No. 34-0961952

The Research Fund

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