Measles: Contradictory Government Statistics

Updated: Nov 7

Chapter 3: Article 3


It is a common belief that robust life lasting immunity results from antibodies, antibodies derived from either the vaccine or illness convalescence. 

But what if antibodies aren't needed?

Last century researchers made the shocking discovery that people who are incapable of producing antibodies are able to be fully immune to illnesses. You might say, "What?!" But it's true, a paper from 1974 explains: 

…children with antibody deficiency syndromes (specific deficiencies of the B cell system) have quite unremarkable attacks of measles with the characteristic rash and normal recovery. Furthermore, they are not unduly prone to reinfection. It therefore seems that serum antibody, at any rate in any quantity, is not required for the production of the measles rash; nor for the normal recovery from the disease; nor to prevent reinfection.

So is there more to the story of immunity than what we've been told, that anti-bodies are the answer?

Of course questioning this does NOT mean that vaccine induced measles antibodies have done nothing to affect the incidence of measles. Today we see dramatically smaller and fewer outbreaks than before the vaccine. The media and health authority point to this as absolute proof that the vaccine is an immunity creating miracle. Unfortunately the measles story is much more complicated than that.

So let's look at some statistics, to learn more about this illness.

On one CDC webpage, titled Top 4 Things Parents Need to Know about Measles, the following information is provided:

  • About 1 in 5 people in the U.S. who get measles will be hospitalized

  • 1 out of every 1,000 people with measles will develop brain swelling, which could lead to brain damage

  • 1 to 3 out of 1,000 people with measles will die, even with the best care

But on a different CDC webpage, titled History of Measles, they provide the following contradictory information:

In the decade before 1963 when a vaccine became available, nearly all children got measles by the time they were 15 years of age. It is estimated 3 to 4 million people in the United States were infected each year. Also each year, among reported cases, an estimated 400 to 500 people died, 48,000 were hospitalized, and 1,000 suffered encephalitis (swelling of the brain) from measles.

So according to those historical stats (using the estimated 4 million annual cases), calculations with those figures show that:

  • 1 in 100 cases of measles will be hospitalized

  • 1 in 4,000 cases will develop brain swelling

  • 1 in 10,000 cases will die

Why does the CDC provide information to parents that differs drastically from their historical reporting?

On another CDC webpage, they explain that in the pre-vaccine era measles was typically experienced by age 15. The webpage states the following:

More than 50% of persons had measles by age 6, and more than 90% had measles by age 15. The highest incidence was among 5–9-year-olds, who generally accounted for more than 50% of reported cases.

On that same webpage, they explain how outbreaks of measles have changed because of mass vaccination. The webpage goes on to explain (emphasis mine):

From 1989 through 1991, a dramatic increase in reported measles cases occurred...Prior to the resurgence, school-aged children had accounted for the largest proportion of reported cases. During the resurgence, 45% of all reported cases were in children younger than 5 years of age...[the reserugance was] the first time that the proportion of cases in children younger than 5 years of age exceeded the proportion of cases in 5–19-year-olds (35%).

...In addition, measles susceptibility of infants younger than 1 year of age may have increased. During the 1989–1991 measles resurgence, incidence rates for infants were more than twice as high as those in any other age group. The mothers of many infants who developed measles were young, and [the mother's] measles immunity was most often due to vaccination rather than infection with wild virus. As a result, a smaller amount of antibody was transferred across the placenta to the fetus, compared with antibody transfer from mothers who had higher antibody titers resulting from wild-virus infection. The lower quantity of [vaccine derived] antibody resulted in immunity that waned more rapidly, making infants susceptible at a younger age than in the past.

The Merck Manual 16th Edition provides the following information, (emphasis mine):

In recent years in the USA, the epidemiology of this disease has shifted, with outbreaks now occurring in previously immunized teenagers and young adults, as well as in unimmunized preschool-aged children. An infant whose mother has had measles receives transplacental passive immunity lasting most of the first year of life; thereafter, susceptibility is high. One attack of measles confers lifelong immunity.

Prior to the measles resurgence of 1989-1991, children received 1 measles vaccine at 15 months of age. (Merck Manual 15th Edition - published 1987 Here). In 1992 after the measles resurgence, a booster shot was added to the childhood vaccine schedule (Merck Manual 16th Edition - published 1992 Here). And then in 1994, the CDC changed the schedule again, moving the booster shot to the kindergarten population, children age 4-6 years. (CDC - 1994 Vaccine Schedule).

When the measles vaccine was introduced, a single dose of vaccine was thought required to provide lifelong protection against the illness. During the first 16 years of vaccine use, the single dose appeared to work well, as outbreaks became smaller and smaller. This evidence made the scientists believe that measles vaccination had rendered the population immune. But then in 1989, resurgence of the illness occurred. As a result, a second dose of vaccine was added to the schedule in 1992, and 28 years have since passed with children receiving the recommended 2 doses of MMR vaccine.

Why does this matter? Well, what has been happening during the past 5 years? Media has repeatedly reported that measles outbreaks are beginning to surge throughout the population again. These reports often claim that it's only the unvaccinated who are responsible, yet many of the reports explain that several adults contracted the illness during outbreaks. It's reasonable to assume that these adults were vaccinated against measles in their childhoods.

Though scientific "consensus" continues to insist that the MMR vaccine creates robust lifelong immunity, the reality is that outbreaks of illness are occurring with increased frequency in highly vaccinated populations. One recognized reason for this is because vaccine induced antibody levels wane significantly or completely in time, and the previous generations who had life lasting immunity from the illness, many of those people have died and are no longer contributing their immunity to the group. The effect of waning vaccine antibody production was completely unexpected. When each vaccine was introduced, scientists assumed that the vaccine induced antibody levels would last a lifetime. They were wrong (more on this later). Scientists also assumed that vaccine induced antibody generation and naturally acquired immunity would behave in the same way. Again, they were wrong (and again more on this later).

At this point in time, it is unknown how many boosters will be required to maintain an adequate antibody level, or if vaccine antibody levels can actually be maintained through a series of booster shots.

To quote the Oxford Academic Journal, which published research titled Persistence of Measles, Mumps, and Rubella Antibodies in an MMR-Vaccinated Cohort: A 20-Year Follow-up, (Link Here) the paper stated the following (emphasis mine):

Protective levels of antibodies induced by the MMR vaccine were first suggested to be lifelong; however, the levels of measles, mumps, or rubella antibodies have been shown to decline over time, faster after vaccinations than when naturally acquired.

...We have followed the kinetics of antibody persistence in the same MMR-vaccinated cohort in repeated samples obtained since 1982 and found that all of the antibodies induced by MMR vaccine wane over time. This was shown to happen especially when the incidence of measles, mumps, and rubella became very low in Finland and natural diseases did not boost the once-gained antibody levels.

...Fifteen years after the second MMR vaccination, the mean antibody levels were roughly one-third of the levels measured right after the second dose. The rate of antibody decline was rapid soon after the second dose, and the decline happened simultaneously with decreasing circulation of wild virus in Finland.

Let's again look at PBS, to the immunity threshold figures they provided which were based upon research published in 1993. PBS explained these "thresholds" as meaning "the minimum percentage of immune individuals a community needs to prevent an outbreak." Again, they are using the word "immune" to mean "vaccinated." The immunity thresholds for mumps was listed at 75-86%, and for measles the threshold was listed at 83-94%.

A report prepared by the CDC evaluated the percentage of kindergarteners who were appropriately vaccinated based on the Government recommended vaccination schedule of 2013, it shows:

  • A median rate of 94.7% of kindergartners in the 2013-2014 school year received the MMR vaccine; ((range = 81.7% in Colorado to ≥99.7% in Mississippi)

What's interesting about those figures, is the health authority has told us for many years now that 95% of the population needs to be vaccinated for herd immunity to be achieved. Why that's interesting is that according to the CDC, a 95% vaccination rate across the country has NEVER been achieved. Prior to 1986, vaccination coverage was between 60-70%, very low by today's standards. What's also interesting about that is at that time there wasn't mass panic within the population over measles outbreaks and their low vaccination rate.

The CDC shows that from 1991-2000 vaccination coverage increased, and ranged between 82-90.5%. Again, there wasn't mass panic because coverage hadn't yet reached 95%. Measles was declared eliminated from the US in 2000, and that year vaccination coverage was 90.5%. Based on the media's reporting today about dangerous anti-vaxxers, would you guess that MMR vaccination rates today are higher or lower than they were in 2000? 

The latest data shows a slightly higher vaccination rate of 91.1% in 2016. So despite maintaining the same (or better) rate of vaccination since 2000, when the vaccine was hailed for eliminating measles, the media repeatedly broadcasts their absolute panic over dangerous anti-vaxxers and a "falling vaccine uptake." Why do they say it's falling when it isn't?

The next article digs deeper, uncovering additional CDC research showing the MMR vaccine wanes and additional booster shots are ineffective.

CONTINUE to the next article - Ch3: Article 4

Article Sources

  • 1974 Paper - children who cannot make antibodies experience measles without problem and become immune Here

  • CDC - Top 4 Things Parents Need to Know About Measles Here

  • CDC - History of Measles Here

  • CDC - The Pink Book - Chapter 13 Measles Here

  • Merck Manual - Vaccine Schedules - 15th Edition & 16th Edition, Measles - 16th Edition

  • Nova - Immunity Thresholds Here

  • CDC - Vaccination Coverage in US Kindergarteners (2013-2014 School Year) Here

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