“It is dangerous to let the public behind the scenes. They are easily disillusioned and then they are angry with you, for it was the illusion they loved.”
– W. Somerset Maugham
It is difficult to underestimate the contribution of immunization to our well-being. It has been estimated that, were it not for childhood vaccinations against diphtheria, pertussis, measles, mumps, smallpox, and rubella, as well as protection afforded by vaccines against tetanus, cholera, yellow fever, polio, influenza, hepatitis B, bacterial pneumonia, and rabies, childhood death rates would probably hover in the range of 20 to 50%. Indeed, in countries where vaccination is not practiced, the death rates among infants and young children remain at that level. 
Whooping cough (pertussis) is a devastating infection. Before a vaccine was first used in the United States in the 1940s, about three hundred thousand cases of whooping cough caused seven thousand deaths every year, almost all in young children. Now, because of the pertussis vaccine, fewer than thirty children die every year from the disease. But times are changing. 
In the United States, pertussis has been successfully controlled by routine mass immunization of infants and children. In the prevaccine era, there were 115,000 to 270,000 cases of pertussis and 5,000 to 10,000 deaths due to the disease each year. During the last 10 years, there have been 1,200 to 4,000 cases and five to ten deaths per year. 
In general, medical measures (both chemotherapeutic and prophylactic) appear to have contributed little to the overall decline in mortality in the United States since about 1900—having in many instances been introduced several decades after a marked decline had already set in and having no detectable influence in most instances. More specifically, with reference to those five conditions (influenza, pneumonia, diphtheria, whooping cough, and poliomyelitis) for which the decline in mortality appears substantial after the point of intervention—and on the unlikely assumption that all of this decline is attributable to the intervention . . . it is estimated that at most 3.5 percent of the total decline in mortality since 1900 could be ascribed to medical measures introduced for the diseases considered here. 
Although pertussis traditionally has been considered a disease of childhood, it was well-documented in adults nearly a century ago and is currently recognized as an important cause of respiratory disease in adolescents and adults, including the elderly. Because of waning immunity, adult and adolescent pertussis can occur even when there is a history of full immunization or natural disease . . . Studies from Canada, Denmark, Germany, France, and the United States indicate that between 12 and 32% of adults and adolescents with a coughing illness for at least 1 week are infected with Bordetella pertussis. 
Pneumonia is a consistent and prominent finding. Fever is severe and persistent and the degree of headache, when present, suggests a central nervous system involvement. Indeed one patient in our series who was examined by EEG, evidence of disturbed electrical activity of the brain was found, suggestive of encephalopathy . . . These untoward results of inactivated measles virus immunization was unanticipated. The fact that they have occurred should impose a restriction on the use of inactivated measles virus vaccine. We now recommend that inactivated measles virus vaccine should no longer be administered. 
The United State Public Health Service licensed a new, refined, live-measles vaccine. Although several live vaccines have been licensed since 1963—all of them one-shot treatments that give life immunity without serious side-effects—the new one is considered by epidemiologists as “the best so far in minimizing the side-effects.” 
Measles, the “harmless” childhood disease that can kill, will be nearly eradicated from most areas of the country a year from now, officials of the United States Public Health Service predict . . . Although there are still more than 12 million susceptible children, vaccination of the “right” two million to four million youngsters could wipe out the disease, according to Dr. Robert J. Warren of the Communicable Disease Center in Atlanta. 
By 1989 the new theory on failure to eradicate was that the earlier vaccines were not as effective as originally believed. Some of the first vaccines mass produced in 1963 contained a killed virus. In 1989 Dr. Feigin of Texas Children’s Hospital stated that he believed the 1963 vaccine was “not widely effective” and that the 1967 vaccine was unsta¬ble and lost its “effectiveness” if not properly refrigerated. It was not until 1980 that a stable live measles vaccine became available. 
“. . . the immune system remains a black box,” says Garry Fathman, MD, a professor of immunology and rheumatology and associate director of the Institute for Immunology, Transplantation and Infection . . . “It’s staggeringly complex, comprising at least 15 different interacting cell types that spew dozens of different molecules into the blood to communicate with one another and to do battle. Within each of those cells sit tens of thousands of genes whose activity can be altered by age, exercise, infection, vaccination status, diet, stress, you name it. . . . That’s an awful lot of moving parts. And we don’t really know what the vast majority of them do, or should be doing . . . 
. . . children with antibody deficiency syndromes have quite unremarkable attacks of measles with the characteristic rash and normal recovery. Furthermore, they are not unduly prone to reinfection. It therefore seems that serum antibody, at any rate in any quantity, is not required for the production of the measles rash; nor for the normal recovery from the disease; nor to prevent reinfection. 
One of the most disconcerting discoveries in clinical medicine was the finding that children with congenital agamma-globulinaemia, who could make no antibody and had only insignificant traces of immunoglobulin in circulation, contracted measles in normal fashion, showed the usual sequence of symptoms and signs, and were subsequently immune. 
Combined analyses showed that massive doses of vitamin A given to patients hospitalized with measles were associated with an approximately 60% reduction in the risk of death overall, and with an approximate 90% reduction among infants . . . Administration of vitamin A to children who developed pneumonia before or during hospital stay reduced mortality by about 70% compared with control children. 
During an epidemic [of measles] vitamin C was used prophylactically and all those who received as much as 1000 mg. every six hours, by vein or muscle, were protected from the virus. Given by mouth, 1000 mg. in fruit juice every two hours was not protective unless it was given around the clock. It was further found that 1000 mg. by mouth, four to six times each day, would modify the attack; with the appearance of Koplik’s spots and fever, if the administration was increased to 12 doses each 24 hours, all signs and symptoms would disappear in 48 hours. 
It has been my practice, when I meet with a case of measles in a family, to prescribe a course of cinnamon for all unprotected members of the family. In the majority of cases the person so treated [with cinnamon] escaped the disease [measles] altogether, or else had it in very mild form. 
Another key factor to consider is that measles vaccine does not create lifelong immunity, whereas natural infection with measles does. The only way to remain immune with artificial immunity via vaccines is to be vaccinated several times during a lifetime. We have not yet seen how the vaccine will play out over several generations of exclusively vaccinated people. Epidemics are likely to become more common in the future.
We can foresee that vaccination will have two conflicting effects . . . it will reduce the number of newborn susceptibles and hence should have some of the usual associated public-health benefits reducing the number of cases in young children. However, this reduction in cases will lead to a reduction in boosting and therefore a greater susceptibility to infection in older age classes . . . When immunity wanes, vaccination has a far more limited impact on the average number of cases. While this observation has clear public-health implications, the dynamic consequences of the interaction between vaccination, waning immunity and boosting are far more striking. For high levels of vaccination (greater than 80%) and moderate levels of waning immunity (greater than 30 years), large-scale epidemic cycles can be induced. 
1. Irwin W. Sherman, Twelve Diseases That Changed Our World, 2007, p. 66.
2. Paul A. Offit, MD, Deadly Choices—How the Anti-Vaccine Movement Threatens Us All, 2011, p. xii.
3. James D. Cherry, MD MSc; Philip A. Brunell, MD; Gerald S. Golden, MD; and David T. Karzon, MD, “Report on the Task Force on Pertussis and Pertussis Immunization—1988,” Pediatrics, June 1988, vol. 81, no. 6, Part 2, p. 939.
4. Historical Statistics of the United States Colonial Times to 1970 Part 1, Bureau of the Census, 1975, pp. 77.
5. John B. McKinlay and Sonja M. McKinlay, “The Questionable Contribution of Medical Measures to the Decline of Mortality in the United States in the Twentieth Century,” The Milbank Memorial Fund Quarterly, Health and Society, vol. 55, no. 3, summer 1977, p. 425.
6. Letter from Victoria Romanus, MD, PhD, Department of Epidemiology Swedish Institute of Infectious Disease Control, Stockholm Sweden, August 25, 1995.
7. Record of Mortality in England and Wales for 95 Years as Provided by the Office of National Statistics, 1997; Health Protection Agency Table: Notification of Deaths, England and Wales, 1970–2008.
8. Edward Rothstein, MD, and Kathryn Edwards, MD, “Health Burden of Pertussis in Adolescents and Adults,” Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal, vol. 24, no. 5, May 2005, p. S44.
9. Vital Statistics of the United States 1963, Vol. II—Mortality, Part A, pp. 1–18, 1–19, 1–21.
10. Vincent A. Fulginiti, MD; Jerry J. Eller, MD; Allan W. Downie, MD; and C. Henry Kempe, MD, “Altered Reactivity to Measles Virus: Atypical Measles in Children Previously Immunized with Inactivated Measles Virus Vaccines,” Journal of the American Medical Association, vol. 202, no. 12, December 18, 1967, p. 1080.
11. “Measles Vaccine Effective in Test—Injections with Live Virus Protect 100 Per Cent of Children in Epidemics,” New York Times, September 14, 1961.
12. “Thaler to Hold State Senate Hearing to Find Fastest Way to Expedite Plan,” New York Times, February 24, 1965.
13. Jane E. Brody, “Measles Will Be Nearly Ended by ’67, U.S. Health Aides Say,” New York Times, May 24, 1966.
14. Lisa Belkin, “Measles, Not Yet a Thing of the Past, Reveals the Limits of an Old Vaccine,” New York Times, February 25, 1989.
15. B. Goldman, “The Bodyguard: Tapping the Immune System’s Secrets,” Stanford Medicine, summer 2011.
16. P. J. Lachmann, “Immunopathology of Measles,” Proceedings Royal Society of Medicine, vol. 67, November 1974, p. 1120.
17. “Measles as an Index of Immunological Function,” The Lancet, September 14, 1968, p. 611.
18. Wafaie W. Fawzi, MD; Thomas C. Chalmers, MD; M. Guillermo Herrera, MD; and Frederick Mosteller, PhD, “Vitamin A Supplementation and Child Mortality: A Meta-Analysis,” Journal of the American Medical Association, February 17, 1993, p. 901.
19. Fred R. Klenner, MD, “The Treatment of Poliomyelitis and Other Virus Diseases with Vitamin C,” Southern Medicine & Surgery, July 1949.
20. “Cinnamon as a Preventive of Measles,” American Druggist Pharmaceutical Record, New York, November 1919, p. 47.
21.J. M. Heffernan and M. J. Keeling, “Implications of Vaccination and Waning Immunity,” Proceedings of the Royal Society B, vol. 276, 2009.
22. D. L. Levy, “The Future of Measles in Highly Immunized Populations: A Modeling Approach,” American Journal of Epidemiology, vol. 120, no. 1, July 1984, pp. 39–48.
– See more at: http://www.vaccinationcouncil.org/2013/11/12/vaccines-a-peek-beneath-the-hood-by-roman-bystrianyk-and-suzanne-humphries-md/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+vaccinationcouncil+%28International+Medical+Council+on+Vaccination%29#sthash.USPFGy4x.BoGo2vJE.dpuf