In response to Peter J Flegg’s comments to my Rapid response to “Cases of measles in England and Wales are highest for 13 years (Kmietowicz 1 December 2008), I point out:
1. Peter Flegg failed to respond/refute that The Amish who claim religious exemption to vaccination had not reported a single case of measles for 18 years (between 1970 and December 1987). He ignored my quoting Hedrich (1933), who is credited with coining the term “herd immunity”, and showing that measles have dynamics of 2-3 years and up to 18 years. Not just 2 years as plainly asserted by Dr Flegg.
2. It is a documented fact that measles vaccine was introduced in the US, and used in mass proportions coincidentally with the beginning of an 18-year cycle of no incidence of measles. During that time, the vaccines kept measles epidemics occurring every 2-3 years in the non-Amish US communities at the time when the unvaccinated Amish had no cases.
3. As far as the herd immunity and vaccination is concerned, there is no positive relationship there. The vaccines do not even protect the individual recipients, notwithstanding protecting the community. I quoted Rauh and Schmidt (1965. Measles immunization with killed virus vaccine. Am J Dis Childhood; 109: 232-237) who described a 1963 epidemic of measles in Cincinnati and wrote “It is obvious that three injections of killed vaccine had not protected a large percentage of children against measles when exposed within a period of two-and-a-half years after immunization”. Actually, Dr Flegg unwittingly provided similar evidence for the ineffectiveness of measles vaccines by writing “full measles vaccination”. It was precisely the failure of one jab of measles vaccines to prevent their recipients getting measles that prompted the introduction of further doses of the same (ineffective) vaccine.
4. Dr Flegg is plainly inaccurate, if not wrong, in stating that it was only the recipients of the killed measles virus vaccine revaccinated with the live virus measles vaccine that developed atypical measles. I quote Krause et al (1980. Measles-specific lymphocyte reactivity and serum antibody in subjects with different measles histories. Am J Dis Childhood; 134: 567-571) who wrote “Since in the past, occasional cases of atypical measles have been noted in persons who as far as could be discerned had received only live vaccines, it has occurred to us that under certain abnormal circumstances, measles-specific lymphocyte sensitization can happen in individuals other than recipients of killed vaccine. Recent trends have led to situations where children have received multiple doses of live vaccine. ” And further “…, we have wondered about the possibility of exaggerated measles-specific lymphocyte reactivity in some multiply vaccinated persons.” One is tempted here to ask, if multiple doses of live measles virus vaccines cause such abnormal circumstances why then administer multiple doses to start with? Cherry (1980. The ‘New’ epidemiology of measles and rubella. Hospital Practice; July: 49-57) wrote “What about the possibility of waning immunity in those who had been vaccinated? In the 1970-71 epidemic, studies in the St Louis area indicated that about one half of 10,000 cases of measles [now that’s a substantial epidemic at the time when the unvaccinated Amish reported no cases!] occurred in vaccinees and about half had been less than one year old at the time of immunization. Some of the affected children in St Louis had mild, apparently modified, disease. About one third of the vaccine failures showed only secondary specific antibody (IgG) response, that is evidence of prior immunologic stimulation to measles without subsequent protection. Similar data for Cincinnati were reported by C.C. Linnemann Jr et al. and for New Haven by A. Schluederberg et al. both of whom noted a large number of “vaccine failures” in patients whose IgG was responsive but whose IgM was not...In short, since these studies indicated that vaccine failure rates increase with time, one could make a case for evidence of waning immunity: however, the influence of improper immunization in these “failures” could not be discounted”. And there is more: “In short, the data suggested that a booster dose might not have any lasting effect on waning immunity.” I am impressed that such a staunch proponent of vaccination as Dr Cherry so honestly reported on the observed fundamental problems with measles vaccination.
5. Having mild measles is not such a good thing, as Ronne (1985) demonstrated in his landmark article, aptly titled “Measles virus infection without rash in childhood is related to disease in adult life” Lancet; 5 Jan: 1-5). He demonstrated that those adults who did not have measles in childhood, and, when having measles, did not develop proper rash, had substantially increased incidence of degenerative diseases of bone and cartilage, sebaceous skin disease, immunoreactive disease and some tumours. These were only the four diseases he looked into, there may be other conditions which are prevented by having natural measles. West (1969. Epidemiologic studies of malignancies of the ovaries. Cancer; July: 1001-1007) demonstrated that having mumps prevents ovarian cancer.
6. It is a wishful thinking of provaccinators that measles epidemics only occur in the unvaccinated: quite to the contrary. Outbreaks in even 100% vaccinated populations in the US (and elsewhere) have continued unabated (thanks for highlighting my typing error, showing Peter Flegg’s potential to be a good editor) to this day. Hedrich (1933) talked about temporary herd immunity when about 63% of suceptibles get measles, which stops the epidemic until there is again similar percentage of susceptibles. When 100% vaccination rate does not prevent epidemics, then, sorry folks, the vaccine is ineffective; moreover, the example of the above-mentioned 18-year cycle of low or no incidence of natural measles, but still characterised by regular 2-3 year epidemics of measles in the vaccinated, in fact means that the vaccine kept measles live and kicking. Just like the polio and whooping cough vaccines. Hutchins et al. (1988) reported on the Current epidemiology of pertussis in the United States (Tokai J Exp Clin Med; 13 (Suppl): 103-109 ) and demonstrated on their figure 1 that when the individual states in the US gradually one after another mandated vaccination around 1978, the incidence of pertussis increased almost three-fold, with the highest annual incidence in infants less than 12 months of age. “Children 1-4 years of age accounted for 25% of all cases but had an average annual incidence only 1/7th that of infants…Rates of hospitalization and complications such as pneumonia, seizures and encephalopathy associated with pertussis were highest in children less than 6 months of age and declined progressively with increasing age. In addition, the mortality ratio was highest in the same age group. Among children with pertussis aged 7 months to 4 years, about 3 of 5 had not received at least 3 doses of DTP (the minimum considered necessary for optimal protection)”. Taken in isolation, this statement is meaningless: it is a well-documented fact that most cases of pertussis and polio (as an example) occur after the first dose. Similar contemporary increase was observed with polio: Figure 1 in Schonberger et al. (1984. Control of paralytic poliomyelitis in the United States. Rev Infec Dis; 6, Suppl 2: S424-S426) shows exactly the same as Figure 1 of Hutchins et al. (1988): a sudden significant and sustained increase in poliomyelitis between 1975-1979, obviously coinciding with increasing numbers of small babies being vaccinated within a short period of time. This also illustrates the so called provocation nature of poliomyelitis, i.e. paralysis caused by other vaccine injections (such as DPT in this case) and vaccine-caused poliomyelitis. Indeed, earlier authors, such McCloskey 1950 (The relation of prophylactic inoculations to the onset of poliomyelitis. Lancet; 18 April: 659-663) reported on polio cases as provocation poliomyelitis, a paralysis caused by DPT injections. More recently, Romania reported on an unusually high (14 times that reported in the USA) incidence of provocation poliomyelitis ( Strebel et al. 1994. Paralytic poliomyelitis in Romania, 1984-1992. Am J Epidemiology; 140 (12): 1111-1124) after a variety of injections, and including DPT.
7. I can quote hundreds of articles describing serious reactions to measles and other vaccines. Perhaps here I quote two papers on subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (SSPE) and measles vaccines. Schneck (1968. Vaccination with measles and central nervous system disease. Neurology; 18 (part 2): 79-70) wrote “The increasing use of measles vaccination has raised some questions about its safety, not only acutely but over a long term. At the University of Colorado Medical Center we have had 3 recent experiences with such vaccinations that are worthy of note. The first one was an acute encephalitis syndrome which occurred in a child previously immunized with killed measles vaccine. The second and third involved the development of subacute sclerosing panencephalitis, in one child 3 years after receipt of killed measles vaccines and another very soon after live attenuated measles virus vaccination.” Then Schneck (1968) described atypical measles illness in 10 children who had received killed measles virus vaccine 5 to 6 years earlier. The illness was characterised by fever and pain in muscles, head and/or abdomen followed by the development of a maculo-papular rash. One child developed irritability, an unsteady gait and intention tremor in addition to the rest of the symptoms as above. Then he concluded that “…this illness might arise following exposure to wild measles virus in patients in whom altered reactivity to this virus had been induced by the previous vaccination”. Schneck (1968) suspected that this was delayed hypersensitivity - experimental allergic encephalomyelitis – which might occasionally occur in this setting.
8. The causal link between vaccination with live measles virus vaccine and SSPE was also described by Modlin et al. (1977) who wrote “Histories obtained in 350 of 375 clinically confirmed cases of subacute sclerosing encephalitis (SSPE) reported to a national registry showed that 292 had measles and 58 had no history of measles. Forty of the latter patients received live, attenuated measles virus vaccine. In patients with a history of measles, measles illness occurred before the age of 2 years in 46% and a mean 7.0 years before the onset of SSPE. In contrast, there was no relationship of SSPE with age at vaccination in 35 of the 40 patients historically associated with measles vaccine, and SSPE occurred a mean 3.3 years after vaccination.” Clearly the vaccine speeded up the development of SSPE.
9. As far as the relevance of older publications is concerned: the relevance and validity of original research and especially description of case histories has never been challenged, it is still widely quoted; moreover, much of the older research is honest as I pointed out in the case of Cherry (198O). Research into a variety of subjects, vaccines being no exception, was conducted intensely at a certain time (atypical measles in the late sixties and early seventies) and is not replicated every year. Even more ‘modern’ research has not proved vaccines effective (the glaring example being the abysmally failed recent testing of HIV vaccine: a number of volunteers contracted AIDS infection from it) and a number of malaria vaccines failed one after another. Quite recently, BMJ published Ufe Ravenskov’s letter “Should medical science ignore the past?” (BMJ.com 2008; 337: a1681) critical of an article on hypercholesterolaemia whose authors selected only reviews if they included “extensive recent references” thereby missing important knowledge from the past.
10. Dr Flegg, just as other vaccinators, begrudges valid and relevant research published in the sixties and seventies, however, he still subscribes to the idea of vaccination developed by Edward Jenner more than two hundred years ago, when, evidently, he had no knowledge of the immune system.
11. Dr Flegg commits worse omissions than I by not revealing the vaccination states of those ‘victims of measles’ who had to be hospitalized and died etc. his sweeping statements ring hollow.
12. Last but not least: I like vaccines to be administered to provaccinators. I can quote many examples of provaccinators refusing vaccines for themselves, such as: the medical director of the Commonwealth Serum Laboratories at the time, was quoted in The Age (newspaper) on 18.4.1976 as not having had a ‘flu shot’ in ten years. “I regard myself as a healthy-middle aged man and I think that I can withstand a bout of flu if I get it”. The same article quoted a doctor from the Fairfield Hospital in Melbourne saying that studies of immunity imparted by flu vaccines showed effectiveness levels down as low as 30%. Orenstein et al. (1981. Rubella vaccine and susceptible hospital employees. Poor physicians participation. JAMA; 245 (7): 711-713 ) reported on a vaccination non-compliance by physicians. I am also asking how come so many doctors like to administer vaccines to others when orthodox medical research (by provaccinators) demonstrated (whether consciously or unconsciously) that vaccines are ineffective to prevent diseases and the dangers are real.
13. It is the orthodox immunological research that demonstrated right ab initio that vaccines by their very nature sensitise, ie. increase susceptibility to the diseases which the vaccines are supposed to prevent and also to related and unrelated bacterial and viral infections (Craighead 1975. Report of a workshop: disease accentuation after immunization with inactivated microbial vaccines. I Infect Dis; 1312 (6): 749-754).
What is there to like in vaccines?
Why not let Nature do its own thing when it does it so well? Nature knows what to do, people often do not (calling human species homo sapiens is a misnomer). Medical errors and changing opinions are well-documented. The benefits of natural, well-managed measles (meaning, not suppressing fever and not administering antibiotics and other drugs), or any other infectious disease of childhood, are amply documented in orthodox medical literature. I suggest that Peter Flegg also reads those ‘dreaded’ historic medical papers. The way he writes suggests to me that he does not seem to have learnt enough from “experience”, either. Doesn’t he see scores of babies with ear infections right after their first dose of vaccines at 2 months? Doesn’t he see babies dying after their vaccinations? Doesn’t he see children with behavioural and learning problems?
I will end my response to him by quoting from Koprowski (I962. The role of hyperergy in measles encephalitis. Am J Dis Childhood; 103: 103-108):
A letter written in 1712 by Princess Elizabeth Charlotte (Liselotte) von Pfalz, Duchess of Orleans and widow of the younger brother of Louis XIV, to the Duchess Sophie, mother of the future George I of England:
“Our misfortune continues. The doctors have made the same mistake treating the little Dauphin as they did ministering to his mother, the dauphiness. When the child was quite red from the rash and perspired profusely, they [the doctors] performed phlebotomy and administered strong emetics; the child died during these operations. Everybody knows that the doctors caused the death of the Dauphin, since his little brother, who had the same sickness, was hidden away from the 9 physicians, who were busy with his older brother, by the young maids, who have given him little wine with biscuits.
Yesterday, while the child had high fever, they wanted also to perform phlebotomy but his two governesses were firmly opposed to the idea and instead kept the child warm. This one also would have certainly died if the doctors had had their way. I do not understand why they don’t learn by experience. Had they no heart, when they saw the Dauphiness die after phlebotomy and emetics, not to dispose of her child?”
Koprowski (1962) added ”Avoid physicians and thou will be cured.”
These days, doctors still relentlessly suppress fever, despite a common knowledge (and research) that fever is an important healing process and administer antibiotics, as a standard procedure, despite an overwhelming evidence that that type of mass medication has caused the microorganisms to become resistant and indeed more toxigenic and causing superinfections. The unrealistic goal of eradicating any diseases is another disconcerting example. Both smallpox and bubonic plague (which vaccine eradicated this disease?) disappeared due to better nutrition and especially a better vitamin C status. Most people still live in unhygienic conditions, which may actually be beneficial for developing immunity.