Looking backward in my lifetime, I have always been only vaguely informed about Vaccines and even the terrible diseases that once ravaged the population…such as Polio…75-odd years ago, but fortunately have been almost eliminated throughout the world. But now…it appears to me…those killer/maimers are peeking out of the holes they once disappeared into.
The last day or so we are finding that Omicron, the latest strain of the Corona-virus to threaten mankind….which may be more hideous because it attacks our children. Oh No! How will the Anti-Vaxxers spin that development.?
They are saying the new strain causes new threat to children in the form of what the first reports described as the “croup.” Then the parenthetical word— “pertussis” sounding the nature of the new wave of horror… begging the question: What is “pertussis”? … whooping cough. A terrible affliction that fortunately was more or less wiped out before I was born in 1934. They called it the “croup,” and whenever one of us kids had even a hint of a cough, Mom would start to worry.
A quick Search of Google tells me that the DPT combination vaccine (against diptheria, pertussin, and tetanus) was developed in the 1930s by a pediatrician names Leila Denmark. I’m not sure when I was given the DPT vaccine. I do recall the Smallpox vaccine when I was about six years old, possibly given me after I had started school. I still have the scar from the bifurcated needle, a single needle which contained multiple small needles.
My first memories of the DPT vaccine was when my oldest child was a baby, in 1957. I believe when the next baby arrived in 1961, that the recently-new Polio vaccine had been added in or with the DPT. Incidentally, I note that when the oldest was six, she became very ill with the hard Measles. The boys were very young, and there was as yet no vaccine against Measles.
My personal vaccine history included a battery of shots before I went to Germany in 1955. Those included vaccination against Malaria, and boosters for anything I had had previously. I also had the series of Polio vaccinations, the Sabin, Salk, and the one given on a sugar-cube.