Acute Flaccid Myelitis and Routine Childhood Vaccinations: This is Nothing New

The photograph above is of Kevin Norbury, taken when he was recovering from polio. Kevin is from Australia. He became paralyzed with polio in 1951, at the age of 10. Kevin’s paralysis began shortly after he was vaccinated against diphtheria, and the paralysis began in the same arm where he received the vaccine. Kevin spent several years in a hospital for disabled children, and as an older adult, he still lives with the remnants of polio. It wasn’t until many years later that Kevin learned that the Australian government had known about a connection between routine childhood vaccinations and increased risk of paralysis from polio, AND they covered it up.
Kevin has written a memoir entitled, The Improbable Reporter. He was interviewed by Andrew Rule of the Sunday Sun Herald and his story was published March 12, 2016.
Dr Bertram McCloskey no doubt saved many lives, maybe even Norbury’s own. But it wasn’t until the adult Norbury dug up a report McCloskey published in a medical journal that he heard of a likely link between the 1950s polio epidemic and inoculation against whooping cough and the deadly disease diphtheria, which once killed tens of thousands of children a year. His report in The Lancet makes disturbing reading, even today,” Norbury begins. McCloskey had noticed that 211 of 340 polio cases in Victoria in six months were children who had been inoculated — and that the more recent the injection, the more likely it was they had developed polio. Even more pointedly, the polio paralysis was more severe in whichever arm the child had recently had injected. This rang alarm bells with Norbury. Because of problems with the primitive syringes then used, he’d been given a double dose of diphtheria vaccine, he says, only weeks before the paralysis hit him. The veteran journalist would ferret out facts hidden from his parents and others when he was a child. He discovered that McCloskey had reported his misgivings to the Victorian chief health officer, the heads of the Commonwealth Serum Laboratories and the head of the Infectious Diseases Hospital. They agreed there was a link between school injections and polio. In fact, the Medical Journal of Australia advised against injecting school-aged children in areas where polio was breaking out. Experts apparently suspected that children’s immune systems were temporarily weakened by the vaccines, making them vulnerable to polio. So what happened? Because of fears of a backlash against immunisation, the authorities buried McCloskey’s report. People in high places thought that the increased risk of hundreds of children getting polio was better than postponing diphtheria vaccinations.”
In the last several weeks there has been a growing concern about the number of children who have developed Acute Flaccid Myelitis (AFM), which the media has reported is a “mysterious polio-like illness.” Daniel Ramirez died on Sunday, October 30th, after being hospitalized for two weeks with paralysis. The doctors at Seattle Children’s Hospital are “scrambling” and “desperate” to find the cause. KOMO News in Seattle talked with Daniel’s mother before his death in a heart-breaking video report. Daniel’s mother knew her son was dying. She also knows something else the media is not reporting: Daniel was vaccinated two weeks prior to getting sick. How do I know? Because someone I know contacted her and asked. And that someone screenshot the conversation. Daniel was recently vaccinated.
The connection between childhood vaccination and paralysis has been known since the polio outbreaks in the 1940s and 1950s, and the knowledge was not confined to Australia. It also happened in the United States, Canada, Germany, Italy, France, and England. There is a very good article in The Lancet, entitled Polio Provocation: Solving a Mystery with the Help of History. In the article, the author, Stephen Mawdsley reveals some very interesting facts about the association between vaccination with diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis, and the increased risk of paralytic polio in recently vaccinated children.
From the Lancet article:
… it was not until the end of World War II that injection-induced polio emerged as a public health concern. The application of epidemiological surveillance and statistical methods enabled researchers to trace the steady rise in polio incidence along with the expansion of immunisation programmes for diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus. A report that emerged from Guy’s and Evelina Hospitals, London, in 1950, found that 17 cases of polio paralysis developed in the limb injected with pertussis or tetanus inoculations. Results published by Australian doctor Bertram McCloskey also showed a strong association between injections and polio paralysis. Meanwhile, in the USA, public health researchers in New York and Pennsylvania reached similar conclusions. Clinical evidence, derived from across three continents, had established a theory that required attention.
Mawdsley goes on to discuss the theories about the mechanism behind polio provocation, which included the hypothesis that the act of piercing the skin during injection drove the polio virus (an enterovirus similar to EV-D68, which has been associated with the “mysterious polio-like illness” circulating in the U.S. for the last few years) into deep tissue, and from there, into the central nervous system, where it led to paralysis and sometimes, death.
What did the United States Health Authorities do???
Mawdsley writes:
The impressive volume of literature on polio provocation by the 1950s fuelled changes in health policy. US health organisations and charities, including the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American Public Health Association, accommodated the possibility of polio provocation and encouraged health professionals to avoid “indiscriminate” injections and “booster shots” during epidemics. In New York City, child health stations were closed and laws mandating paediatric vaccinations before school attendance were relaxed. Most health professionals reformed their immunisation practices and accepted that seasonal factors and cycles of disease were important to consider before immunising children.
In the 1940s and 1950s, the mechanisms of provoked polio were hypothetical. They didn’t stay hypothetical. In an article from 1998, published in the Journal of Virology, researchers reported their findings, which confirmed the suspicions of nearly half a century earlier, writing:
Skeletal muscle injury is known to predispose its sufferers to neurological complications of concurrent poliovirus infections. This phenomenon, labeled “provocation poliomyelitis,” continues to cause numerous cases of childhood paralysis due to the administration of unnecessary injections to children in areas where poliovirus is endemic. Recently, it has been reported that intramuscular injections may also increase the likelihood of vaccine-associated paralytic poliomyelitis in recipients of live attenuated poliovirus vaccines. We have studied this important risk factor for paralytic polio in an animal system for poliomyelitis and have determined the pathogenic mechanism linking intramuscular injections and provocation poliomyelitis. Skeletal muscle injury induces retrograde axonal transport of poliovirus and thereby facilitates viral invasion of the central nervous system and the progression of spinal cord damage. The pathogenic mechanism of provocation poliomyelitis may differ from that of polio acquired in the absence of predisposing factors.
The virus that is associated with the more recent hospitalizations of children is Enterovirus D68. It is not polio, but it is a very similar virus and belongs to the family of enteroviruses, which includes polio virus.
Dr. Cunningham wrote:
Since August 2, 2014 our Centers for Disease Control has received reports of 107 cases of ‘acute flaccid myelitis’ (AFM), a polio-like illness in children in 34 states. During the same interval there have been 1153 cases of respiratory illnesses associated with enterovirus D-68 (CIDRAP News 1/16/15. CDC update 1/15/15. Catherine Saint Louis, NY Times 1/13/15). AFM affects motor neurons in spinal cord gray matter, resulting in asymmetrical limb weakness; 34% of patients have cranial nerve motor dysfunction. Median age of patients is 7.6 years/range: 5 months-20 years (MMWR 63: 1243–January 9, 2015). So far only one child has fully recovered. EV-D68 is a suspected cause but, thus far, no viruses have been found in the spinal fluid of patients, and only a minority have had an antecedent illness associated with EV-D68. Case-control studies are planned to look for clues, but presently AFM is a mystery disease of unknown cause.
It is taboo to suggest a role for vaccines, but some old-timers remember “provocation poliomyelitis” or “provocation paralysis.” This is paralytic polio following intramuscular injections, typically with vaccines. PP was most convincingly documented by Austin Bradford Hill and J. Knowelden during the 1949 British polio epidemic when the risk of paralytic polio was increased 20-fold among children who had received the DPT injection (BMJ 2:1–July 1, 1950). Similar observations were made by Greenberg and colleagues in New York City; their literature review cited suspected cases as far back as 1921 (Am J Public Health 42:142–Feb.1952). I first became aware of PP 10 years ago while browsing through “Krugman’s Infectious Disease of Children” (page 128 of the 2004 edition).AFM may result from a direct virus attack on the spinal cord, or by an immune attack triggered by a virus, or by something else.
If a polio-like virus is circulating in the U.S., the possibility of its provocation by one or more vaccines has to be considered.
The United States has a history of doing the right thing when this happened in the 1950s. The question is, will the United States and the doctors, Health Departments, and the American Academy of Pediatrics do the right thing now? And if not, how many more children like Daniel Ramirez will be sacrificed as a result of that decision?
As Mawdsley writes in his Lancet article, concerns about polio provocation resurfaced in the 1980s, as vaccination programs increased in developing countries, and as a result, increasing numbers of children were being paralyzed. In the 1980s, the United States government went on record as choosing the vaccination program over the well-being of children, publishing the following in the Federal Register (the daily journal of the U.S. government), in regard to the polio vaccine:
…any possible doubts, whether or not well founded, about the safety of the vaccine cannot be allowed to exist in view of the need to assure that the vaccine will continue to be used to the maximum extent consistent with the nation’s public health objectives.
Only time will tell what our government will do. We need to scream from the rooftops that it is time to stop the sacrifice of our children.
Please pray for Daniel’s family, and for the families of all the children who are caught in the middle of what can only be described as a battle between innocent lives and the very powerful forces of darkness fueled by the billions of dollars greasing the palms of those who make the decisions about mandatory vaccinations.