When I came upon this article from the World Heath Organization (WHO) I was not surprised how it was written and laid out. As usual it appears very scary. I guess I don’t scare easily and I read through that because, the truth is in here if you can find it.
I enjoyed dissecting the article about antiperspirant so, I am going to do that again. Here is my interpretation:
The very first thing we see is the “scary” numbers in the “key facts.”
Measles is one of the leading causes of death among young children even though a safe and cost-effective vaccine is available.
Only in poor, developing countries we will read that farther into this article.
In 2012, there were 122 000 measles deaths globally – about 330 deaths every day or 14 deaths every hour.
Where? Who? It is the same people that are severely effected by Malaria. In 2012, malaria caused an estimated 627 000 deaths mostly among African children. Where a child dies every minute from malaria.
Why are we not worried about malaria? Did you get a malaria vaccine?
Measles vaccination resulted in a 78% drop in measles deaths between 2000 and 2012 worldwide.
Tuberculosis & Scarlet Fever are recorded having the same decline here in the United States and in developing countries without a vaccine.
In 2012, about 84%* of the world’s children received one dose of measles vaccine by their first birthday through routine health services – up from 72% in 2000.
*We will need this reference later in the article.
Since 2000, more than 1 billion children in high risk countries were vaccinated against the disease through mass vaccination campaigns ― about 145 million of them in 2012.
Measles is a highly contagious, serious disease caused by a virus. In 1980, before widespread vaccination, measles caused an *estimated 2.6 million deaths each year.
According to the CDC, “Measles vaccine was licensed in the United States in 1963. During 1958-1962, an average of 503,282 measles cases and 432 measles-associated deaths were reported each year.”
It remains one of the leading causes of death among young children globally, despite the availability of a safe and effective vaccine. Approximately 122 000 people died from measles in 2012 – mostly children under the age of five.
Effective? Overall, U.S. vaccination coverage is at record high levels. As we continue to read we will read this: “was vaccinated but did not develop immunity+”
I think the quote from the key facts applies here “cost-effective”
Measles is caused by a virus in the paramyxovirus family. The measles virus normally grows in the cells that line the back of the throat and lungs. Measles is a human disease and is not known to occur in animals.
Accelerated immunization activities have had a major impact on reducing measles deaths. Since 2000, more than one billion children in high risk countries were vaccinated against the disease through mass vaccination campaigns ― about 145 million of them in 2012. Global measles deaths have decreased by 78% from an estimated 562 400 to 122 000.
*How did it decline from the estimated 2.6 million deaths each year before widespread vaccines to 562,400?
Signs and symptoms
The first sign of measles is usually a high fever, which begins about 10 to 12 days after exposure to the virus, and lasts four to seven days. A runny nose, a cough, red and watery eyes, and small white spots inside the cheeks can develop in the initial stage. After several days, a rash erupts, usually on the face and upper neck. Over about three days, the rash spreads, eventually reaching the hands and feet. The rash lasts for 5 to 6 days, and then fades. On average, the rash occurs 14 days after exposure to the virus (within a range of seven to 18 days).
(The fever has an important role in both viral and bacterial infections. Read my blog “Hot & Bothered”)
*Severe measles is more likely among poorly nourished young children, especially those with insufficient vitamin A, or whose immune systems have been weakened by HIV/AIDS or other diseases.
I found this very interesting because, the number one vitamin that the medical community warns against is vitamin A!
Most measles-related deaths are caused by complications associated with the disease. Complications are more common in children under the age of five, or adults over the age of 20. The most serious complications include blindness, encephalitis (an *infection that causes brain swelling), severe diarrhoea and related dehydration, ear infections, or severe respiratory infections such as pneumonia. As high as 10% of measles cases result in death among populations with high levels of malnutrition and a lack of adequate health care. Women infected while pregnant are also at risk of severe complications and the pregnancy may end in miscarriage or preterm delivery. People who recover from measles are immune for the rest of their lives.
(*Don’t break the fever and the infection will not take over the body.)
Who is at risk?
Unvaccinated young children are at highest risk of measles and its complications, including death. Unvaccinated pregnant women are also at risk. Any non-immune person (who has not been vaccinated or was vaccinated but did not develop immunity) can become infected.
“Unvaccinated young children are at highest risk?” But it has already said, “*Severe measles is more likely among poorly nourished young children, especially those with insufficient vitamin A, or whose immune systems have been weakened by HIV/AIDS or other diseases.”
Measles is still common in many developing countries – particularly in parts of Africa and Asia. More than 20 million people are affected by measles each year. The overwhelming majority (more than 95%) of measles deaths occur in countries with low per capita incomes and weak health infrastructures.
Still common? But as of 2012, about 84%* of the world’s children received one dose of measles vaccine by their first birthday through routine health services – up from 72% in 2000.
I am sadden by the death of so many, please don’t mistake my point or take it out of context. But these death are not occurring in the modern world and the vaccine is not the reason why! Instead of vaccinating them how about we nourish them and teach them proper hygiene?
Roughly one third of the food produced in the world for human consumption every year — approximately 1.3 billion tonnes — gets lost or wasted, according to an FAO-commissioned study.
Kudos, to this France grocer who figured out a way to sell ugly fruit and vegetables at a reduced cost.
Measles outbreaks can be particularly deadly in countries experiencing or recovering from a natural disaster or conflict. Damage to health infrastructure and health services *interrupts routine immunization, and overcrowding in residential camps greatly increases the risk of infection.
*So, vaccinations are routinely happening most of the time.
The highly contagious virus is spread by coughing and sneezing, close personal contact or direct contact with infected nasal or throat secretions.
The virus remains active and contagious in the air or on infected surfaces for up to two hours. It can be transmitted by an infected person from four days prior to the onset of the rash to four days after the rash erupts.
Measles outbreaks can result in epidemics that cause many deaths, especially among young, malnourished children. In countries where measles has been largely eliminated, cases imported from other countries remain an important source of infection.
No specific antiviral treatment exists for measles virus.
Severe complications from measles can be avoided though supportive care that ensures good nutrition, adequate fluid intake and treatment of dehydration with WHO-recommended oral rehydration solution. This solution replaces fluids and other essential elements that are lost through *diarrhoea or vomiting. Antibiotics should be prescribed to treat eye and ear infections, and pneumonia.
*Diarrhea and vomiting cause dehydration which, becomes the greatest complication of measles. Yes, there are antibiotics available to kill infection, if needed.
All children in developing countries diagnosed with measles should receive two doses of vitamin A supplements, given 24 hours apart. This treatment restores low vitamin A levels during measles that occur even in well-nourished children and can help prevent eye damage and blindness. Vitamin A supplements have been shown to reduce the number of deaths from measles by 50%.
Vitamin A treatment=Nourishment! Nourishing young children is key to fighting all disease.
From the MMR package insert:
I encourage you to read through the Adverse Reaction section. Of course, they state these reactions are rare and a coincidence when caused by vaccination, but is declared a public health emergency when caused by a disease.
Here are just a couple statements I pulled from the insert.
As for any vaccine, vaccination with M-M-R II may not result in protection in 100% of vaccinees.
M-M-R II has not been evaluated for carcinogenic or mutagenic potential, or potential to impair fertility.
It is not known whether measles or mumps vaccine virus is secreted in human milk. Recent studies have shown that lactating postpartum women immunized with live attenuated rubella vaccine may secrete the virus in breast milk and transmit it to breast-fed infants.
If you are wondering about the effects from the vaccine read this blog they took the time to search VAERS and reported the total and shared a few stories.
I have shared this image before, but it is appropriate here, too.
My Grandfather with my Dad, and two Aunts. The children are five, three, and one. They all have measels.