Friday, March 11, 2016

About Measles

Let’s begin with the Measles vaccine.  According to Julian Scott, an acupuncturist since 1976, Measles Encephalitis is the main “motivation for giving children the measles vaccine” (Acupuncture in the Treatment of Children, p. 160).  He lists three reasons to avoid this vaccine. 1) The brain damage that can occur from the vaccine can be equal to that of the disease itself. 2) The toxin, pathogenic heat from gestation and the early years of the child, needs to be expelled.  Measles helps this to happen.  If this heat/toxin is not released, then diseases may occur later in life fueled by this toxin. 3) Acupuncture is widely available and can treat Measles effectively (160).  Being a non-neglectful parent means researching both vaccinations and the numbers of reported adversities, along with understanding the criteria for an accepted adversity, and to study both the pro and con literature about vaccines themselves.  If you make the informed decision to vaccinate, then you can justify it to yourself that you did what you thought was best if your child ends up becoming a vaccine statistic.  Likewise, if you don’t vaccinate and your child becomes ill and you seek whatever treatment you had decided on prior to implementing your decision, then you feel that you made an informed decision and you most likely will not make yourself wrong.  This is all any child can ask for: a parent who educates him or herself for their best interest.  A parent who doesn’t allow the news to teach them, or a doctor to manipulate them with fear or power is an involved parent.

In Stage I, there is an incubation period of about 10 days with a fever for about 3-4 days before the rash appears, where the child is not necessarily irritable (162).  As Scott says, “Three or four days after the fever starts, a bright red rash will appear, usually at first behind the ears and/or on the neck, then the head and face, chest and ribs, abdomen, limbs, palms and soles” (162).   The little one will have a slight cough, watery eyes and will shy away from light.  He or she will seem lethargic, have puffy eyelids, and may possibly vomit or have diarrhea.  Measles has a characteristic sign of grayish-white spots with red borders around them in the mouth (162).  Acupuncturists also look for a sign on a certain finger of children, and look at their tongue, and pulses, because all convey information about the disease’s progression and state of the child’s health.  The acupuncturist will “gently cool, vent the rash, and release the exterior.”  It would be interesting for parents who are doing research to ask a pediatrition what treatment protocol they have for each stage of the disease.  How confident and comfortable are the doctors and acupuncturists with the idea of treating Measles? 

In Stage II, the rash appears.  The fever is high and stubborn.  The child wants to drink a lot as he or she is incredibly thirsty.  The cough is severe and the child is restless.  There may be a desire to sleep.  There may be convulsions due to the heat (162-3).  As Scott writes, “A raised maculopapular rash [flat base with a solid, rounded bump in the center] then appears, starting first behind the ears then spreading to the neck, face, head, chest, back and limbs; the rash is bright red in color, and may exude a watery fluid; later the rash spreads and joins into larger areas, the color becoming darker” (163).  The acupuncturist will note changes with the pulse and tongue that will also help him or her to identify this stage, especially if the child has just come to their office at this stage of the disease and the acupuncturist was not present earlier.  If Measles appears in a vaccinated child, the fever and cough may be milder, the spots may be more scattered, and the rash may be pale red, possibly not having reached the hands or feet (163).  The heat will be cleared by an acupuncturist, toxicity resolved, and rash vented (163).

In Stage III, the rash will fade, cough and fever will diminish, and the appetite and vigor of the child will improve.  The pulses, tongue, and finger will show different signs.  The acupuncturist will tonify the cool, moist aspects of the child’s Qi, as well as strengthen the Qi.  The remaining toxicity will be resolved and expelled.

Parents need to especially be interested in what the doctors do to support the child after the disease has gone.  An acupuncturist will check for a certain kind of fever, less severe than the Measles fever, but which shows damage to a child’s Yin.  Are the bowel movements regular?  Is there a weak cough?  Are there night sweats or sweating for seemingly no reason?  Are there night terrors, abdominal distention, diarrhea, or residual skin lesions?  Scott warns that adequate nursing after the three stages have past is  important (163-4).   The acupuncturist knows how to address these symptoms as well as to support the child’s Blood and to stop any itching that may be occurring (164).

This is just one simple look at Measles.  Please turn off the news and research for yourselves.  Local acupuncture schools house books either within libraries or to sell if you are interested in reading these kinds of medical books.  Even if you do not fully understand the jargon, you may-be able to get an idea about the many available treatment plans for various diseases and then be able to shop for a practitioner with confidence yourself.  For those parents interested in vaccinating children, the following link may help you to identify an adverse reaction to vaccines.

Scott, Julian. Acupuncture in the Treatment of Children. Hove: Eastland Press, 1995.  Julian Scott is an acupuncturist in England.  He has authored other books.

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