Measles from a META-perspective


Everybody´s talking about measles these days. What´s worse, fears and uncertainty are splitting a society and create hate debates and "mummy wars". Should vaccination be compulsive? Should unvaccinated kids be denied access in kindergardens? Are vaccines safe? What gives us back our security?

Who remembers life 30 or so years ago, when measles were childhood diseases just like rubella, mumps and chicken pox? It was usual to get them some time during kindergarden or primary school. Yes there were cases with complications even then, just as is possible with any disease.

I recall having to stay at home, it was somewhat boring, but there was this knight´s castle I built from cardboard. I didn´t feel sick really, but there were these red dots. My parents let me play inside, and once in a while my temperature would be taken. The atmosphere was calm with a certain special status for me (that also has something to it for a kid) Well, this typical scenery has surely changed a lot!

From META-perspective we know that just the atmosphere of confidence and calm that are transferred to the child from parents and surroundings, are vital factors for the healing process! Fear and arguments have a counterproductive and weakening effect no matter if kids are vaccinated or not.

Protection, maturity and timing

For a calmer evaluation we first should take some distance to what creates a fear response, and try to grasp the meaning and biological mechanism of immunity. The observations are, that real and lasting immunity is gained by going through the respective illness alone [1]. We can talk about the infantile organism developing it´s individual strategies to handle certain agents or triggers. It is understandable that a certain maturity is needed for this, and therefore nature allows the mother to provide her child with a passive maternal immunity. This means, the baby profits from his mother´s resilience and is protected until it reaches the maturity to deal with the agents on his own. But this is true only for a naturally acquired immunity, not for vaccinated mothers. Actually, the natural antibodies and their protective qualities can even be weakened by vaccination [2][3].

In other words, the child of a vaccinated mother can get the measles earlier, at a time when his body hasn´t yet reached the necessary state of maturity. Then the process can be experienced much more dangerous. However, babies can first be vaccinated at one year of age, and best protection can be gained first after the second vaccination. This leaves the baby unprotected the most critical time until age one. This is the greatest problem in modern pedriatic healthcare, and it's tried to be met with so called herd immunity, i e the immunization/vaccination of the complete surroundings.

Despite this problematic, the numbers of deaths due to measles in Europe seem to remain quite constant, as explained in this article (in German).

Strategies for social contact

Diseases are always about conflict strategies. The symptomatics hint at what kinds of conflicts. Childhood diseases which concern the whole body and several organ systems are about generalized themes which one learns to handle, like social contact. As babies we are completely dependent on our mother´s care and skin contact for survival. At defiant age then we learn fast by wanting to do things by ourselves. We like to have control over the amount of contact. Naturally this leads to conflicts. It has been observed that neurodermatitis, or itching eczema of the epidermis, went into remission after an infection with measles [4][5]. These symptoms concern the organ of contact, just as the biological strategy introduced by measles.

Also children with nephrotic syndrome [6][7], epilepsy [8][9], Hodgkin- and Non-Hodgkin-Lymphoma [10][11] have benefitted of measles infection and the symptoms went into remission. Even here the conflict strategy seems to have been upgraded on different levels. The measles virus is being used to successfully treat cancers like multiple myeloma [12].

What do we conclude from this?

There is no security against conflicts and diseases. But there is optimization of the conditions to overcome them, and protection in the right moment. For some parents this may be vaccination at this moment, possibly because of suboptimum life circumstances. With overview one can get to the conclusion that the comprehensive natural passive maternal immunization needs to be re-established, as well as the children´s resilience to many affections that seem to have escalated over the past decades.

Expert opinions about maternal immunization and resilience

Dr. Steffen Rabe, paediatrist in Munich, points out the immunizing result of undergone infection compared to measles vaccination [13]:

A team of German scientists, to which belonged also the chairman of the Permanent Committee for Immunization (STIKO) HJ Schmitt, confirmed in an analysis presented last year that one of the causes for the increase of cases of severe bronchitis and bronchiolitis in mammals and human toddlers seems to be the vaccination against measles, because it obviously seems to fail to give the cross-immunity against the main agent of these diseases (the Respiratory Syncitial Virus/RSV) that the undergone infection gives.

Dr. Michael Friedl, paediatrist in Heidelberg, comes to the conclusion that measles only lead to complications when fever is suppressed [14]:

As a naturopathic paediatrician I advocate to admit fever up to 40,8ºC (105.44ºF). Severe courses of the disease have in the past been observed only when the fever was artificially lowered to 38,5ºC (101.30ºF), as by medication or by cool compresses. That temperature is not sufficient for successful defense.
By introducing forced immunization we take responsibility for their own and their children´s health from the parents. This is inadequate. Even a lethal case, as hard this is for the concerned parents, does not change this. In my practice I educate the parents that there is no scientific proof or guarantee for the effectiveness of vaccination, and that both choices – to vaccinate or not – have risks. Parents who result critical against vaccination are mostly very aware of their health and lifestyle choices. They don´t need to be patronized by us doctors.

Concerning fever and fever seizures and their treatment read a pediatrist´s opinion here and experiences of concerned parents here. (Links in German)

[14] Freie Presse 24.02.2015

Image source:
CDC/NIP/Barbara Rice under Public Domain US Government