Friday, March 28, 2014

You Know You're Coughing Too Much

... when the cat leaves because you're keeping him from sleeping.  You know you're coughing too much when you dream about trying to calm yourself so you don't cough.

Just got back from my second trip to the lung specialist who (this time) gave me a script for Codeine.  It has to help my sleep, if not Mojo's. He also pointed out that there has been a strange return of pertussis - Whooping Cough - in the last decade and much of the disease is in us older adults.  Since Jenny McCarthy hadn't been born yet, there was no "anti-vaccination movement" to speak of and we all got vaccinated against it.  The real reason there was no anti-vaccination movement, of course, was that those diseases were not some remote risk that never happened.  Those risks were as real as an oak tree to our parents because many of us came from a family where a child (or more than one!) was lost to Whooping Cough, so they viewed the vaccines as the modern miracles they are.  Mrs. Graybeard tells of hearing the story throughout her childhood of how her parents, as children, lost brothers and sisters to "The 100-day cough".  In one case, one sibling came down with the disease on the way to/from the funeral of another. 

The vaccinations appear to be wearing out.  Add it to the list of vaccinations I ought to get. 


  1. If you get that vaccination, I believe they also give you a tetanus booster as well, which is a good thing. I got both with the same injection last fall.

  2. In 1968 I was in Germany. My landlady's baby got whooping cough and the cough was the most heart rendering sound I have ever heard. She lived in the basement apartment and I lived on the first floor. The house was built of cconcrete blocks with a concrete floor and didn't offer much in sound proofing. I can remember lying in bed hearing the baby coughing so hard and in between gasping and trying to get enough breath to be able to cough again. I can remember hearing moments of total silence after ghastly coughing spasms when I would guess the baby had succumbed. But then the baby would again cough and wheeze terribly. I remember this whenever someone makes an arguement against vaccination.
    Also my mother had polio in the 20's I was born during WW II and grew up before the polio vaccine and can remember the palpable fear my mother had of polio. In our ignorance most thought that the summer heat and being outside had something to do with getting polio so in the worst heat of the summer we stayed in the house with the curtains drawn. My mother was very afraid of polio for good reason. I can remember visiting an adult cousn in the hospital who had polio so bad he was in an iron lung. I'm not sure anyone can conjur up the eerie feeling of talking with and looking at someone you know inside an iron lung clankng away ponderously. I can also remember getting the polio vaccine in school once it was made available. Jenny McCarthy is the product of a world with greatly reduced risks of disease and greatly increased risk of ignorance of disease.

  3. Anon 1716: Heart-wrenching telling of that story. I could almost experience it reading that.

    In a way, the vaccines' very success is the cause of the anti-vaccine movement. Jenny and these other activists compare some nebulous risk they can't quantify with a disease that nobody ever gets, anyway, and decide the diseases can't be that bad a risk. Just being within earshot of that baby would (I'm betting) keep you from ever having her view.

    I remember standing in line for the Polio vaccine at my elementary school; that would have been around 1960. I never knew anyone that had it, but nobody in our generation would ever think "Iron lung" in some remote way, like a young mother today would.

  4. When all you have ever known is the security of food, warmth and peace, it is easy to forget the struggle it took to obtain those things. We are fast burning through the design margins.

  5. I've had bronchitis about two out of every three years since the 1980s. Generally, with an antibiotic, it would last 2-3 weeks. In October 2102, I started coughing again. By January, I had had three rounds of antibiotics, two rounds of prednisone, and a few Hail Mary prescriptions. Then, based on something my wife saw online, I asked my internist if it could be my blood pressure meds (of the last 10 years). He switched me to a different prescription, and the cough went away in less than a week. The only lingering effect is that I cannot yell now without blowing out my vocal cords.

  6. Pertussis is a bacterial infection. Bacteria evolve...and they do so quickly. Many of the
    old diseases we thought were beaten are coming back. Partly because walking brain donors refuse to accept the miracle of vaccines but also because the bacteria have had the opportunity to evolve and thus are more virulent. It's germ warfare and the germs are winning.

  7. Don't forget about the influx of third world "undocumented" immigrants who didn't have access to the vaccines we take for granted. Many diseases that had all but died out here in the States are being reintroduced by those populations.

    The anti-vaccine movement gains some traction due to the idiocy of players in the pharmaceutical industry pushing useless vaccines (HPV) and concerns of them cutting corners and introducing less than safe 'inactive' ingredients into their vaccines to increase profit margins.


  8. It would be easy but a cheap shot to accuse the HPV vaccine of being useless and being pushed by pharmaceutical companies. In fact it is a huge deal and may save thousands perhaps millions of lives. Furthermore it is beng "pushed" by feminist and other pro-women groups (not inappropriately in my belief). As for the inactive ingredients you refer to lets be honest yu mean thimerosal. It has been proven beyond a doubt that thirmerosal was/is not harmful and the hype abut it was pure BS. And more importantly thirmerosal was not put into vaccines to make a profit or for some nefarious reason it was necessary. Of course the scientists had no way to know that ignorance and superstition would lead some people to claim the thimerosal was a capitalist conspirasy to both make you sick and make docotrs rich. Who could possibly think our education could be so inept as to allow such unscientific thinking. But yet it continues to be a problem and an indicator that ignorance knows no bounds.

  9. The "useless" vaccine issue is hyped because the vaccines in question don't provide the same obvious life changing immediate benefits that other vaccines such as for polio, smallpox etc.

    When a vaccine keeps a significant portion of the population from developing a disease that frequently kills or paralyzes then the benefits are amazingly obvious and the risks of
    that vaccine from side effects are ignored.

    When a vaccine such as Gardasil, which does NOT save lives RIGHT EFFING NOW or prevent gross deformity or disfigurement causes the same tiny percentages of side effects that the others caused all of a sudden it becomes a federal case, a cause celebre, a
    HUGE PROBLEM. WHY? Because the risks become more apparent whereas the benefits are not seen and are realized in the in that HPV infection did not occur so that person did NOT develop cervical cancer 20 years later.

    It's typical human short sightedness, the inability of most
    people to plan beyond next month let alone see years into the future regarding positive or negative outcomes.

    This behavior is why Homo SemiSapiens is not an intelligent species....merely a clever one.