Characters, including heroes, can receive what are called Infirmity Adjustments (IA) from injury or illness. They function in a roll just like a negative PA or RA. They are, however, solely for dramatic purposes and are meant to get healed eventually in the adventure.
IAs are not given to specific traits, but apply to any appropriate rolls.
IAs and negative PAs and RAs unfortunately stack. This means that a hero could potentially suffer a -6 penalty (or more), and therefore rolling is pointless.