Archive for the 'Disease' Category


Dr.Jonas Salk administered one of the first polio shots.


On February 23, 1954, a group of children from Arsenal
Elementary School in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, receive the
first injections of the new polio vaccine developed by Dr.
(above). Thanks to the vaccine, by the 21st
century polio cases were reduced by 99 percent worldwide.

Though not as devastating as the plague or influenza,
poliomyelitis was a highly contagious disease that emerged
in terrifying outbreaks and seemed impossible to stop.

Attacking the nerve cells and sometimes the central nervous
system, polio caused muscle deterioration, paralysis and even
death. Even as medicine vastly improved in the first half of the
20th century in the Western world, polio still struck, affecting
mostly children but sometimes adults as well.

The most famous victim of a 1921 outbreak in America was
future President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, then a young
politician. The disease spread quickly, leaving his legs
permanently paralyzed.


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On December 9, 1979, a commission of scientists declared smallpox
has been eradicated. The disease, which carries around a 30 percent chance of death for those who contract it, is the only infectious
disease afflicting humans that has officially been eradicated.

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Three former directors of the Global Smallpox Eradication Program read the news that smallpox had been globally eradicated.

posted by Bob Karm in ANNIVERSARY,DEATH,Disease,Eradication,HISTORY,Medical,Science,Smallpox and have No Comments


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Sir Alexander Fleming  (August 6, 1881 – March 11, 1955)

Sir Alexander Fleming (above) was a young bacteriologist when
an accidental discovery led to one of the great developments
of modern medicine on September 28, 1928. Having left a plate
of staphylococcus bacteria uncovered, Fleming noticed that
a mold that had fallen on the culture had killed many of the
bacteria. He identified the mold as penicillium notatum,
similar to the kind found on bread.

In 1929, Fleming introduced his mold by-product called
penicillin to cure bacterial infections.


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posted by Bob Karm in ANNIVERSARY,Discovery,Disease,HISTORY,Medical,Medicine and have No Comments


First cases of human West Nile virus in 2018 confirmed - ABC News


The West Nile virus quickly spread across the United States after the
first reported cases in Queens, New York on this day in 1999. The
virus was believed to have entered in an infected bird or mosquito,
although there was no clear evidence. The disease spread quickly
through infected birds. Mosquitoes spread the disease to mammals.

The first human cases usually followed within three months of the
first appearance of infected birds in the area except where cold
weather interrupted the mosquito vectors.

Don't forget your mask, or mosquito repellent: Dallas residents ...


West Nile Virus > Hill Air Force Base > Article Display

West Nile Virus

posted by Bob Karm in ANNIVERSARY,DEATH,Disease,HISTORY,NEWSPAPER,Virus and have No Comments


During the influenza epidemic of 1918, Portland converted one of its newest
and largest buildings, the Portland Auditorium, into a temporary hospital.

Make-shift hospitals were set up in Portland, and other cities.  Here volunteer nurses from the American Red Cross tend influenza sufferers in the Oakland Auditorium, in California.

The Spanish influenza pandemic became one of the deadliest events
in history. Although the Spanish flu struck Portland, Oregon more
than a century ago, how Portlanders reacted then has an uncanny parallel to what we’re experiencing now with the Coronavirus. The
first confirmed case in Portland was a soldier, a private on his way
to Texas for training.

Just a week after Portland’s first Spanish flu diagnosis, the Oregon
State Board of Health ordered all public gathering places to shut
down statewide. Parades were canceled. Church services were
suspended. Restaurants sat empty. Dance halls silent. And
suddenly, 36,000 Portland students had nowhere to go. 

In addition to the closures, stores and businesses limited hours. Portland’s famous department store, Meier & Frank, asked
customers not to come into their store but rather to make delivery orders.

Officials urged Portland residents to wash their hands and keep
at least 4 feet apart — the prototype of “social distancing.”

Salem History: How the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic compares to COVID-19
The Oregon Statesman.

Seattle police officers wear masks during the influenza epidemic made by the local chapter of the American Red Cross in this National Archives photo dated December 1918.


posted by Bob Karm in CURRENT EVENTS,Disease,HISTORY,Medical,NEWSPAPER,Oregon's past,Pandemic,PORTLAND'S PAST and have No Comments