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A 1932 ME/CFS Outbreak?

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS News' started by Melanie, Jan 25, 2018.

  1. Melanie

    Melanie Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    In 1932, 100,000 people in Los Angeles became ill. 5% had Polio but others were ill with other diseases and illnesses. In 1934, blood serum from the victims of the outbreak was used on the staff of LA Hospital. Although some who never had this serum injected into them did get sick, MUCH MORE injected with the serum became ill with an unknown disease which was polio-like. The 1934 LA Hospital outbreak is the first recorded ME/CFS outbreak.

    I believe the LA Hospital staff that were not injected with the blood serum of the victims of the 1932 outbreak became ill when the ME/CFS was in a contagious stage from the staff that did get the serum injection.

    Video of Dr. Byron discussing the 1932 and 1934 outbreaks.

    1934 Outbreak: http://me-pedia.org/wiki/1934_Los_Angeles_atypical_polio_outbreak

    1932 Outbreak: "In 1932, there were epidemics in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Los Angeles. Los Angeles' epidemic was so bad that the city's public health services began to break down. Ambulances and stretchers blocked the streets in front of the county hospital, where frightened hospital workers turned people away." http://www.teachspace.org/personal/research/poliostory/fear2.html
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2018
  2. Little Bluestem

    Little Bluestem Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    How appalling!
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2018
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  3. Forbin

    Forbin Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    This is a report on the use of antiserum in the 1934 Los Angeles outbreak:

    Use of Serum and the Routine and Experimental Laboratory Findings in the 1934 Poliomyelitis Epidemic
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1558945/

    There were two kinds of antisera used. One was obtained from patients who were convalescing from polio, and the other was obtained by pooling the serum of healthy adults.

    Most people who are infected with the polio virus do not go on to develop polio, but they will develop antibodies to the virus. By pooling the sera of many healthy adults, it could be hoped/expected that the resulting collective serum would contain at least some polio antibodies.

    Both types of antiserum were used in 1934. There's no mention in the report of the antiserum coming from the 1932 LA outbreak. The report's language tends to make it sound as if the serum came from the then current 1934 outbreak, but it's unclear. Since you can apparently freeze antiserum for years, it might have come from 1932. It just doesn't say.

    Neither type of antiserum seemed to be effective. The rate of polio in those who got either type of antiserum was about the same as in those who received no antiserum at all (in fact, those who got the antiserum were slightly more likely to get polio).

    The report says:
    This could be interesting, in that it seems like at least some patients had a notable immune reaction to the antiserum. I don't know how common that is with human antiserum, but, just as it appears that ME/CFS can be triggered by immune reactions to a variety of pathogens, maybe ME/CFS can also be triggered by a severe immune reaction to human antiserum itself (as opposed to, say, some pathogen in the serum).
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2018
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  4. Sisyphus

    Sisyphus Established Member (Voting Rights)

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    I don’t think so. It was apparently believed that serum would protect them from the outbreak. It appears to have done the reverse.
     
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  5. Little Bluestem

    Little Bluestem Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    I'm glad to hear that their intentions were good.
     

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