Tag Archives: disease

Pandemic

(Survival Manual/1. Disaster/Pandemic)

 Humans often tend to forget that they are not the only living species which adapts to and exploits the populations of other living beings.
A virus, such as one of the influenza variety, would have  a field day in our global, highly inter-connected society, especially in the midst of an economic depression (remember, H1N1 killed 50 million people in the early 20th century).

 1.  Overview: Surviving a deadly  pandemic
•  The duration of  a medical crisis  is usually 14-21 days depending on the disease and its method of movement through the country. There may be another 2-3 months before things swing back  to normal, but the worst will be over in 3 weeks.
•  Today we understand that a 30-40 day break in a human borne diseases cycle will stop most from spreading, except in the case where there are vectors such as rates, mice, pigeons that continue to harbor, carry and spread the disease.
•  Successful medical survivors will need to be news junkies, learning all there is to know about any threatening disease. What is it, how is it spread, why is  it here, what hosts are involved, and how long lived outside of human/ animal hosts?
•  Things to watch for: Look for signs that diseases are spreading than the experts normally expect, that the strain if disease is especially difficult to treat, that it is being spread by means not previously observed by those in the medical profession, that there are observed multiple /simultaneous outbreaks, that the disease is strangely affecting plants and /or livestock.

Diseases characterized as being ‘a far more virulent strain’ and/or that ‘are attacking our agricultural production’ are especially cautionary.
•  The basics of survival need not include anything more than provision for food, water, shelter, energy, medical and sanitary and self actualization.
•  Own a full face respirator (HEPA=high efficiency particulate air) with HEPA filters capable of sorting out particle down to about 0.3 microns. That size includes TB and smallpox organisms. Smallpox is one of the largest viruses known. You will need to store 4-6 extra sets of filters for each apparatus per
person. (see Disaster/Biological warfare document)
•  When an outbreak reaches the 30-50% rate victims will be whisked away to a central location if for no other reason to get them out of sight to die.
•  If  the epidemic is raging in your community or the neighbor have contracted it, you may be faced with wearing your mask continuously indoors.  (safety people who currently use masks claim,  “You get use to them”). In any event, city survivors might wish to wear at least a model N95 HEPA disposable filter during any infrequent time they leave the retreat to replenish supplies.
•  Remember that irregardless of the promises and issued statements, government never has done well at medical or any other enterprise. There is no penalty for government workers who fail to produce or who make wrong decisions.
•  The best survival defense is total obscurity. Another iron rule of survival is that you should never, never become a refugee. Worldwide, throughout history, refugees have always been as good as dead.  Refugees are characterized as being hopeless people with absolutely no control over  their lives. All of lives necessities are provided by others—always at their whim. Crime is rampant. In refugee camps, private property ownership is always nonexistent. Any necessity of life comes from the will of an often-disinterested, corrupt, arrogant, bureaucrat. Food, shelter, warmth, family stability, sanitation and personal safety are all in the hands of another person—who usually doesn’t give a damn.
•  Another rule of survival is that as much energy as possible should come from renewable or scrounged sources, ie firewood, burnable scrap, , peat dug out of a nearby bog, etc.
•  Effective shelter absolutely must provide for a place to safely store food supplies, prepare food, provide access to water, answer to one’s need for cleanliness and sanitation, and provide protection and security.
•  The deployment of tents means more than one tent, as there should be one tent for kitchen and food supplies, and another for personal shelter and maybe a 3rd for sanitation and porta-pottie.

How a pandemic might look (synopsis)
Some effects that a pandemic might have:
First off, people might not go to work, either because they’ve got the disease, they’re  too scared to show up, their workplace has been closed, or they’ve got to stay home because their kids are out of school.

The results of this might include:
•  Utility plants (power, gas, water, sewage) left untended, and maintenance and routine chores neglected until they cease tofunction.
•  Nobody available to fix things that break: powerlines, water mains, etc.
•  Public transit closed, either because there’s no employees around to run said transit (or for quarantine reasons)
•  Farmers who can’t farm, because they’re sick or they can’t get gas, diesel, propane, or supplies.
•  Items stored in warehouses can’t be distributed,including, potentially, food and medication and parts to fix things
•  Gasoline and diesel shortages
•  Retail and grocery stores closed
•  Additionally, local authorities may institute quarantines and closures. Either you may be unable to
travel to get your groceries, or the groceries themselves may be stuck inside or outside of a quarantined area. (One would assume that the authorities will figure out how to safely get supplies delivered; one would also assume that there would be some chaos and bureaucracy involved. I’d rather not go hungry
for a few days while they wrangle out the details.) It’s the rare grocery store that stocks more than enough food for a day or two for a given area. And areas where large groups gather, including schools, retail stores, movie theaters, and nonessential businesses of any kind, may simply be closed to limit spread.
•  Quarantine is a real possibility. Some of the families of the infected patients in the US have already been told to stay home until the authorities are sure they’re not sick. (See above: contagious before symptoms.) I’ll assume that, since there are only a few of them, having food and supplies delivered to the sick and quarantined won’t be a problem. However, if there are tens of thousands of families sick,
and all their friends, family, and the local pizza delivery drivers in the city are sick? Yeah. That could be logistically a little bit more of a challenge.
•  Finally, a pandemic will put a huge stress on the economy. Businesses will go under. It’s kinda hard to keep a cash flow going if you can’t sell anything because both your customers and your employees are unable to buy anything because of illness, quarantine, or unwillingness to leave the house. And if people can’t work because of quarantines and closures, they won’t have money to buy things.  Our economy is already a fragile house of cards. A pandemic would yank a few supporting aces out of the base, in unpredictable and potentially disastrous ways.

So. You need to prep in a hurry. What do you do?
First off, consider the basics. (See topic, Preparing for a Pandemic, below
1)  Water
2)  Food
3)  Shelter
4)  Health care
5)  Personal protection

First, cover your “water supplies” first. This is fairly easy, but also rather important. You  could see either shortages or contaminated water if water treatment plants break down, and if you’re on a well, you’ll need a power source to pump the well.
Get some jugs, fill them up, set them aside somewhere in your house. Figure a couple gallons per person per day. (You’ll need water for cleaning, drinking, and cooking.) How many days worth of water you feel you need to store is very situation dependent, of course. I’m probably going to need have a lot more water stored in Arizona than a guy living on a lake somewhere in the Pacific Northwest where it rains every day.
Also, if you don’t have some in your laundry room, get a couple jugs of chlorine bleach,and set it aside for water purification. For unscented chlorine bleach at 4-6% strength add 8 drops per gallon of water. If water is contaminated (see: water treatment plant breakdown) or you need to resort to natural sources of water such as rainwater or rivers and creeks you’ll have something to purify it with.
If you don’t need to purify water, you can use it for sanitation or for your laundry, and an extra jug of bleach is cheap enough that it shouldn’t be a budget breaker.

Second, figure out what you’re going to do for food. A few weeks, or even a month or two, of supplies is a good idea.
If you buy basic staples, you probably won’t break the bank. Buy food that you’ll actually eat and know how to cook, or can easily learn. Also, buy food with an idea of how you’ll cook it if the power goes out. If you’ve got a large home propane tank that’s been recently topped off or a wood burning stove you may chose to stock different types of food than someone who’s living in an apartment with just an electric range. If the power goes out, cooking a big pot of dry beans is not easy … but you can still eat a cold can of soup.
Go for the most calories for your buck if you’re short on money. Also, do not overstock on items that need to be frozen or refrigerated.  If the power goes out, or your freezer simply breaks down (See:  Murphy’s Law), you’re going to be eating a lot of meat in a hurry if your preps included half a cow.

Severity?
The severity of the next pandemic cannot be predicted, but modeling studies suggest that its effect
in the United States could be severe. In the United States, a pandemic influenza outbreak similar to the 1918 strain, could result in:
•  2.25 million deaths
•  90 million falling ill
•  60% absenteeism in the workplace
•  An economic impact of $310 billion reduction in GDP

Bird flu poses no great threat to humanity. This disease is simply too lethal to its victims and  too fast in killing them to ever pose any significant threat to mankind. With a 50% or so mortality rate  occurring in about 5 to 7 days after infection this disease cannot live long enough to spread. It also assures prompt detection.
Quick effective countermeasures can be applied. It may be a problem, but H5N1, as this virus is known, is not going to be a mass killer.

A pandemic disease of great danger has a unique pattern for its transmission and lethality. A dangerous pandemic disease will only have a moderate mortality rate in the order of 1% or 2%. This
will allow the disease to survive and infect. It will spread slowly and incubate for fairly long periods of time. This provides effective transmission to large numbers of victims. H5N1 simply doesn’t fit the bill. Even in a fairly mutated form this disease has little or no prospect of ever being a serious threat. The high rates of morality for bird flu and its fast transmission will make great headlines. It will not make a great epidemic. This bird flu will die out too fast to amount to anything. This is why the disease after 7 years has only produced a few deaths.

The flu is truly a dangerous disease.
In any given year the USA will lose between 10,000 and 50,000 people to the flu. It will make ill in varied degrees of seriousness between a million and 5 million persons. A truly serious flu epidemic could kill millions and make sick large parts of the population. We definitely need much more effective measures to deal with the flu in whatever form that arrives each year.

Pandemic Self Quarantine (Influenza)
•  10 days for personal infection = 1 incubation period
•  21 days minimum, more likely 8 to 10 with 12 weeks maximum for the community = 3 to 5 incubation periods
•  The disease may have run its course after the initial wave, if not may return in 3,6 or 12 months with a second wave. While the initial wave will most likely occur during the normal flu season, November through March, subsequent waves may arrive for a few individuals in June, but no new community outbreaks occur until August. with a wave peak in October (see below–to get chronology right).

2.  Preparing for a Pandemic
An expert discusses the ‘Must-Haves’ if Bird Flu (or ‘fill in the blank’) cripples the country.

The Red Cross says that if there’s a pandemic, we need to prepare for 10 days of being stuck in our homes, and that we may be without power and water during that time. In the event of a bird flu pandemic, Americans should plan for interruptions or delays in other services: Banks might close, hospitals could be overwhelmed, and postal service could be spotty. Experts also say that people need to begin stocking up on extra food and supplies like protective masks, flashlights, portable radios, batteries and matches.

“When you go to the store and buy three cans of tuna fish, buy a fourth and put it under the bed.
When you go to the store to buy some milk, pick up a box of powdered milk, put it under the bed,” said Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt. “When you do that for a period of four to six months, you are going to have a couple of weeks of food. And that’s what we’re talking about.”

Previous pandemics occurred in 1918, 1957 and 1968, and the worst waves of illness seem to pass
through communities in a matter of six weeks to eight weeks. Computer models suggest about 30 percent of people could be infected, but not all at the same time.

In the event of a pandemic, people must practice what the health officials call “social distancing,” or keeping away from other people’s germs. Schools and day-care centers could be closed, sporting events and other large gatherings could be canceled, and shaking hands could become socially unacceptable, at least for a while.

Darlene Washington, the director of disease prevention education at the American Red Cross, points
out some of the must-haves in the event of a bird flu pandemic.

Have 3 sources for each of the following necessities
•  Water–(utility, potable water storage, rainwater catchment, local fresh water supply/ treatment).
•  Food–(store, stocked cupboard, food storage program)
•  Shelter–(Home, camper, tent, 2nd home, relative or friend living away from the area)
•  Energy–(Utilities, Propane and propane appliances, firewood, solar appliances, battery backup/ photovoltaic

Water
“We recommend that each member of your family has a gallon of water for each day, so a family of
four needs to have 40 gallons of water available for a 10 day emergency period, that water needs to be stored because there’s a chance that your water will get cut off if there’s a pandemic,” Washington said. “Workers may not be able to make it, and plants may stop operating. Your family will need to drink water and for hygiene, for brushing their teeth and washing their hands.”

Food
In previous centuries, people had no means of  accumulating and preserving enough food and water to see them through a 3-10 week crisis. Fortunately, this is no longer true today. Modern technology
allows us to store food and water and to separate ourselves from disease  organisms.
You need foods that will not spoil, so you need canned foods like tuna. You also need to get foods that you don’t have to heat, because just like your water, your powers may go out, too. In addition, to things like canned tuna, you should start storing peanut butter, protein, bars, crackers. Again, foods that have a long shelf life and that don’t need to be heated. Make sure you have enough formula and baby food to get through that 10 days. You have to plan for every member of your family and that includes your pets. So get extra dog food or cat food, and make sure you have extra water for your pets. You need a 10-day supply for everyone.”

In spite of the apparent violation of the Rules of Three: Food storage alone is the best single recommendation for epidemic  survivors.

Some common sense:
•  If there is a avian type disease around, don’t  eat pigeons.
•  If yellow fever, malaria or any other mosquito borne disease is pandemic you may not want to wade into the swamp or hang around the lake collecting cattails.
•  If some mutant form of bubonic plague, spread by natural causes or bio-warfare is around, don’t consider rats as an emergency food.

Power Outages
It’s reasonable to believe that the grid will mostly  stay up during an epidemic and that emergency may be short lived.
“Stores are going to run out of what you need, too,” Washington said. “So that’s why you need to stock up now. And we encourage families to have supplies on hand like flashlights and batteries, matches. Hand-cranked or battery-operated radios, and a manual can opener, because you are going to need to open all those cans of food. And this may not seem important, but you must get activities for your children and yourself, games, coloring books, cards.”

Cleaning Supplies
“You have to have all those on hand to keep your home clean and to have receptacles for all your
trash,” she said. “You probably won’t have trash service and you need to account for that. You need to make sure to have paper towels, toilet paper and soap. Everything you need to keep your home clean and practice good hygiene.”

Medication
“You need to get an additional 10 days of all your prescription medications,” Washington said. “You
should also have over-the-counter, fever-reducing medications; medications for upset stomach; and cold and flu medication. You’ll also want to have fluids like Gatorade and Pedialite, which have electrolytes and will help a family member rehydrate if they get sick. Also, keep a few thermometers around in case someone gets sick.”
Taking refuge in a travel trailer or tent is OK for medical survivors, as long as you  don’t become refugees.

 If a Family Member Gets Sick …
“The first thing is  to strengthen your hand washing and to have the infected family member cover
his mouth when he coughs,” she said. “You should also keep that person isolated in a certain part of the house and identify a family member who will help him. You may have to take turns.”

Concepts to consider when preparing for a pandemic & self quarantine
•  Flu spreads in waves of 3-5 months with 3 months in-between.
•  Self-quarantine for 90-120 days per wave.
•  Government efforts to supply food and water are 10% effective at best.
•  Outside dirty, inside clean; Boy in the Bubble concept
•  Maintain household shelter with a good seal.
•  Clear brush and undergrowth 100 feet parameter around the house.
•  Preferable: Heat pump with forced air cooling/heat to filter out virus/microbes.
• Have a water reservoir, i.e., covered, pool, tubs and barrels, then disinfected.
•  Any source of standing water or body of water is a contaminate. Remove birdbaths,  old tires and/or fill puddles. Virus lives in water for days, influenza lives on hands 5 minutes.
•  Don’t have  bird feeders or chicken in your yard
•  Food supply; Have 1year supply per person.
•  Vacuum with bags that filter for allergens.
•  No eating from outside gardens, only preserved food.
•  Indoor sprouts, fluorescent lights for indoor growing plants vegetables.
•  Bleach for water disinfectant (10 drops/gallon) and medicinal wound care (½ sterile water ½ bleach).
•  Hand cleaners- soap and alcohol based.
•  Running water for washing hands, not standing water.
•  Face masks N-95 and goggles for outside.
•  No individual contact less than 8 feet (NO handshakes etc) social distancing.
•  Animals inside space and same social considerations.
•  Dogs and cats immunizations kept up (any stray dog will be shot).
•  Water repellent clothing w/ hood when outside (large garbage bags)
•  Toilet bowl cleaner tablets for inside standing water (tidy-bowl etc).
•  No contact with people within 8 feet, viruses jump 5+ feet.
•  If an exchange is required drop item in spot i.e. porch and leave then the receiver can pick up the item i.e. soup, firewood etc. (This was the practice during the 1918 influenza)
•  Keep dust to minimum, dusters, wet wipes. Sneeze into your elbow.
•  Keep surfaces clean with disinfectant.
•  Bake items coming into house for 20 min at 325F+ degrees (Microwave is best)
•  Good hygiene; Wash hands thoroughly and frequently after contact from outside world.
•  Once one individual leaves and breaks quarantine, they cannot return to re-infect rest of household.
•   No group meetings parties’ weddings, funerals, church, etc.
•  Only burn wood that is stored under protective covering and dry, if wet consider it contaminated.
•  Wallpaper the ceiling, walls and windows with foil in one safe room to insulate and retain heat.
•  UV lighting on surfaces (can cause skin cancer).
•  No washing cars by hand.
•  Flies and mosquitoes out must be kept out, don’t leave windows, doors open, screens are not an option. Bug Zappers are either a really good idea because they kill bugs or a real bad idea because they attract bugs.
•  Handling mail, wear gloves and bake mail before opening it (e-mail best).
•  Analog phone for when power goes out.
•  OTC medicine supply for diarrhea and cold remedies.
•  Homemade ‘Gatorade’: 1 tsp Lite Salt (source of potassium) + 1/3 tsp Baking Soda + 10 tsp sugar + 1 qt water OR 1 tsp salt + 3 tsp sugar + 1 qt water.
•  Turnips, clover and potatoes are good crops for cold weather.
•  0.4 rads / min acceptable after nuclear fall out.
•  Mice- use copper wool stuffed into holes around plumbing to keep them out.
•  Garbage bags to wear punch holes in sides and put arm through, good for warmth and as a disposable barrier from the outdoors.
•  Have a supply of Vitamins.
•  Wash down entryways w/ bleach or cleaner.
•  Keep shoes outside of living quarters (on enclosed pourch).
•  Use a pressure cooker and/or microwave to disinfect food.
•  Food from the outside- root veggies only (microwave and wash).
•  Cage animal, not range free (rabbits)
•  Dishwasher sterilizes
•  Remember your dishcloth is the dirtiest item in household
•  Shopping cart handles are the dirtiest item in public
•  Magazines  are the dirtiest item in doctor’s office
•  Your purse is exposed to everything, same with the morning coffee mug that follows you around at work
•  Do not share pens, combs, etc.
•  Tarp and duct tape corpses, bury deep at home if possible
•  Remove moss from roof as it harbors bacteria and virus.
•  Streams, lakes, ponds, marshes, rivers are sources of contamination.
•  Keep the outside yard dry, no watering lawn.
•  Rain, Snow, Mist, and fog are also carriers for the virus…
•  The Plague never returned to London after London’s Great Fire

3.  Flu Pandemic Mitigation – Social Distancing
 “It’s not like a ‘snow day!”
The so-called social distancing measures they studied would dramatically alter the life of the city for a period of months — long enough, Eubank said, for vaccine makers to develop a vaccine.

Schools and day-care centers would close. Theaters, bars, restaurants and ball parks would be shuttered.
Offices and factories would be open but hobbled as workers stay home to care for children. Infected people and their friends and  families would be confined to their homes.
“We are not talking about simply shutting things down for a day or two like a ‘snow day’. It’s a sustained period for weeks or months,” he said. “You wouldn’t go out to the movies. You wouldn’t
congregate with people. You’d pretty much be staying home with the doors and windows battened down,” he said.

While those measures seem draconian, Eubank said they are steps many people would take on their own in the face of a deadly flu outbreak. “In the context of a very infectious disease that is killing a
large number of the people, I think large fractions of the population won’t have a problem with these recommendations,” Eubank said.

 Two ways of increasing social distance activity restrictions are to 1) cancel events and 2) close buildings or to restrict access to certain sites or buildings. These measures are sometimes called “focused  measures to increase social distance.” Depending on the situation, examples of cancellations and building closures might include: cancellation of public events (concerts, sports events, movies, plays) and closure of recreational facilities (community swimming pools, youth clubs, gymnasiums).

Closure of office buildings, stores, schools, and public transportation systems may be feasible community containment measures during a pandemic. All of these have significant impact on the community and workforce, however, and careful consideration should be focused on their potential
effectiveness, how they can most effectively be implemented, and how to maintain critical supplies and infrastructure while limiting community interaction. For example, when public transportation is cancelled, other modes of transportation must be provided for emergency medical services and medical
evaluation.

In general, providing information to domestic and international travelers (risks to avoid, symptoms to look for, when to seek care) is a better use of health resources than formal screening. Entry  screening of travelers at international borders will incur considerable expense with a disproportionately small impact on international spread, although exit screening would be considered in some situations.

Although data is limited, school closures may be effective in decreasing spread of influenza and reducing the overall magnitude of disease in a community. In addition, the risk of infection and illness among children is likely to be decreased, which would be particularly important if the pandemic strain causes significant morbidity and mortality among children. Children are known to be efficient transmitters of seasonal influenza and other respiratory illnesses. Anecdotal reports suggest that community influenza outbreaks may be limited by closing schools. Results of mathematical modeling also suggest a reduction of overall disease, especially when schools are closed early in the outbreak.
During a Pandemic Period, parents would be encouraged to consider child care arrangements that do not result in large gatherings of children outside the school setting.

There is some evidence that big gatherings of people encourage spread of flu, and measures to flatten the epidemic curve can helpful in easing the most intense pressure on health services. Limiting public gatherings can be an effective preventive measure for diseases that are transmitted through the air [unlike flu] – especially for diseases that are transmitted by individuals with no symptoms [such as flu]. Often, public health experts recommend limiting exposures to others-such as frequently occurs during influenza season. There is a big difference between recommending limited public gatherings and enforcing a more specific and uniform requirement. In making a decision to close gathering places, the impact on economy, education, and access to food / water / other necessities needs to be balanced with the ability to effectively protect the public through such means.

During the 1957-1958 pandemic, a WHO expert panel found that spread within some countries
followed public gatherings, such as conferences and festivals. This panel also observed that in many countries the pandemic broke out first in camps, army units and schools; suggesting that the avoidance of crowding may be important in reducing the peak incidence of an epidemic.

During the first wave of the Asian influenza pandemic of 1957-1958, the highest attack rates were seen in school aged children. This has been attributed to their close contact in crowded settings. A published study found that during an influenza outbreak, school closures were associated with significant decreases in the incidence of viral respiratory diseases and health care utilization among children aged 6-12 years.

Given a pandemic strain causing significant morbidity and mortality in all age groups and the absence of a vaccine, the WHO consultation on priority public health interventions before and during an influenza pandemic concluded that authorities should seriously consider introducing population-wide measures to reduce the number of cases and deaths. These would include population-wide measures to
reduce mixing of adults (furlough non-essential workers, close workplaces, discourage mass gatherings). Decisions can be guided by mathematical and economic modeling.

The Center for Biosecurity of University of Pittsburgh Medical Center [UPMC] argued that idea that the cancellation of public gatherings or the imposition of travel restrictions might limit the spread of disease are scientifically unfounded, and that presenting them has the potential to create false expectations about what can be accomplished by government officials and their proposed containment measures. The UK Government, for instance, has concluded that closing schools and other
educational facilities would have a limited effect on the epidemic. There would be a major reduction in the numbers of students affected. On the other hand, there would be little reduction in the number of cases in the rest of the population. The UK Government concluded that there was little evidence that
cancelling large public events would have any significant impact on the course of the epidemic.

Flu Pandemic Home Care
Home care will be the predominant mode of care for most people infected with influenza. Most patients with pandemic influenza will be able to remain at home during the course of their illness and can be cared for by other family members or others who live in the household.  Anyone residing in a household with an influenza patient during the incubation period and illness is at risk for developing influenza. A key objective in this setting is to limit transmission of pandemic influenza within and outside the home. When care is provided by a household member, basic infection control precautions should be emphasized (e.g., segregating the ill patient, hand hygiene). Infection within the household may be minimized if a primary caregiver is designated, ideally someone who does not have an underlying condition that places them at increased risk of severe influenza disease. Although no studies have assessed the use of masks at home to decrease the spread of infection, use of surgical or procedure masks by the patient and/or caregiver during interactions may be of benefit.

The term “flu” is much used and abused.
Some people use the term “stomach flu” as an informal way of saying “gastroenteritis of unknown etiology.” Sometimes people confuse cold and flu, which share some of the same symptoms and occur at the same time of the year (cold and flu season). However, the two diseases are very different. Most
people get a cold several times each year, and the flu only once every several years. Others think that “flu” is any kind of illness with aches and fever with or without respiratory symptoms. In reality, influenza is none of these things. Influenza is a specific, often severe, respiratory viral infection caused by influenza viruses. The whole body suffers from it.

Typical symptoms include:
• 
The flu usually begins abruptly, with a fever between 102 to 106°F (with adults on the lower end of the spectrum). Other common symptoms include a flushed face. Some people have dizziness or vomiting. The fever usually lasts for two or three days, but can last 5 days.
•  Somewhere between day 2 and day 4 of the illness, the “whole body” symptoms — chills, weakness, lack of energy, loss of appetite, and aching of the head, back, arms, legs — begin to subside, and respiratory symptoms begin to increase.
•  The virus can settle anywhere in the respiratory tract, producing symptoms of a cold, croup, sore throat, bronchiolitis, ear infection, or pneumonia. The most prominent of the respiratory symptoms is usually a dry, hacking cough. Most people also develop a sore (red) throat and a headache.
Nasal discharge and sneezing are common. These symptoms (except the cough)
usually disappear within 4-7 days
•  Sometimes there’s a second wave of fever at this time.
•  Often the person continues to feel sick for several days. Cough and tiredness usually last for weeks after the rest of the illness is over.
•  Sometimes the person can have complications, such as dehydration or pneumonia.The disease is characterized by abrupt onset of constitutional and respiratory symptoms, including fever, chills, muscle aches, headache, malaise, nonproductive cough, sore throat, and runny nose. Upper respiratory and constitutional symptoms tend to predominate in the first several days of
illness, but lower respiratory symptoms, particularly cough, are common after the first week. In children, nausea and vomiting and, occasionally, ear infection are also symptoms.
•  Since several other respiratory pathogens (including adenovirus, respiratory syncytial virus, para influenza virus, rhinovirus, corona virus, human metapneumo virus, Mycoplasma pneumoniae and Legionella) can also cause a similar clinical picture, definitive diagnosis of influenza requires laboratory confirmation. However, laboratory testing is not necessary for all patients. In the presence of a community outbreak of respiratory illness, a presumptive diagnosis can be made based on knowledge of the predominant agent causing the outbreak. Uncomplicated influenza gets better with or without treatment, but may cause substantial discomfort and limitation of activity before getting better.
Complications of influenza can include bacterial infections, viral pneumonia, and cardiac and other organ system abnormalities. People with chronic medical conditions may have increased risk of complications when they get influenza.
Many other diseases, including serious infections such as rapidly progressive bacteremias, may start with symptoms that resemble influenza and may need to be considered in treatment decisions. Many people with uncomplicated influenza use over-the-counter medicines to help lessen their symptoms.Here are some tips to keep from spreading your germs to others, and to keep from catching someone else’s germs.

Keep your germs to yourself
•   Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when sneezing, coughing or blowing your nose.
•   Throw out used tissues in the trash as soon as you can.
•   Always wash your hands after sneezing, blowing your nose, or coughing, or after touching used
tissues or handkerchiefs. Wash hands often if you are sick.
•   Use warm water and soap or alcohol-based hand sanitizers to wash your hands.
•   Try to stay home if you have a cough and fever.
•   See your doctor as soon as you can if you have a cough and fever, and follow their instructions,
including taking medicine as prescribed and getting lots of rest.
•   If asked to, use face masks provided in your doctor’s office or clinic’s waiting room; follow their instructions to help stop the spread of germs.

Keep the germs away
•  Wash your hands before eating, or touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
•  Wash your hands after touching anyone else who is sneezing, coughing, blowing their nose, or whose nose is running.
•  Don’t share things like cigarettes, towels, lipstick, toys, or anything else that might be contaminated with respiratory germs.
•  Don’t share food, utensils or beverage containers with others.
•  Especially during a pandemic or disaster situation you are best served by not visiting the hospital if you can help it, where you are more likely to sit or stand next to a person carrying incurable TB, flu, smallpox, or whatever epidemic disease is ‘going around’. Remember, the doctor’s office and hospital’s
waiting room is where the sick congregate, it’s this infected group that you are trying to avoid! You are much more likely to encounter contagious people in hospitals than anywhere else, even though the facilities are generally much more sanitary. Survivors will try to avoid contact with anyone while outside.

4.   Plan  Ahead
People should plan ahead and think about what they need to have in their house in case someone in their household were to become infected with influenza and need to receive care at home. If you live alone, are a single parent of young children, or are sole caregiver for a frail or disabled adult, it would be a good idea to have some items stored in your home in case of illness:
•  Have enough fluids (e.g. water, juice, soup) available to last for 2 weeks.
•  Have enough basic household items (e.g. tissues) to last for 2 weeks.
•  Have acetaminophen and a thermometer in the medicine cabinet. Do you know how to use/read a thermometer correctly? If not, ask someone to show you how.
•  Think of someone you could call upon for help if you became very ill with the flu and discuss this possibility with him or her.
•  Think of someone you could call upon to care for your children if you were required to work and their school or day care was closed because of the influenza pandemic; discuss the possibility with them.

A.  Infection Control Measures in the Home
•  All persons in the household should carefully follow recommendations for hand hygiene (i.e., hand washing with soap and water or use of an alcohol-based hand rub) after contact with an influenza patient or the environment in which care is provided.
•  Although no studies have assessed the use of masks at home to decrease the spread of infection, use of surgical or procedure masks by the patient and/or caregiver during interactions may be of benefit. The wearing of gloves and gowns is not recommended for household members providing care in the
home.
•  Soiled dishes and eating utensils should be washed either in a dishwasher or by hand with warm water and soap. Separation of eating utensils for use by a patient with influenza is not necessary.
•  Laundry can be washed in a standard washing machine with warm or cold water and detergent. It is not necessary to separate soiled linen and laundry used by a patient with influenza from other household laundry. Care should be used when handling soiled laundry (i.e., avoid “hugging” the laundry) to avoid contamination. Hand hygiene should be performed after handling soiled laundry.
•  Tissues used by the ill patient should be placed in a bag and disposed with other household waste. Consider placing a bag for this purpose at the bedside.
•  Normal cleaning of environmental surfaces in the home should be followed.

B.  Management of Well Persons in the  Home
•  Persons who have not been exposed to pandemic influenza and who are not essential for patient care or support should not enter the home while persons are actively ill with pandemic influenza.
•  If unexposed persons must enter the home, they should avoid close contact with the patient.
•  Persons living in the home with the pandemic influenza patient should limit contact with the patient to the extent possible; consider designating one person as the primary care provider.
•  Household members should monitor closely for the development of influenza symptoms and contact a telephone hotline or medical care provider if symptoms occur.

C.  Management of Influenza Patients
Persons who have a sudden onset of influenza-like symptoms (e.g. headache, fever, chills, cough, chest pain, sore throat, muscle aches, weakness, exhaustion) should do the following:
•  Remain at home at least until all symptoms have resolved (approximately 4-5 days)
•  Take medication as needed to relieve the symptoms of the flu.
•  Decongestants, such as phenylephrine, and pseudoephedrine, produce a narrowing of blood vessels. This leads to clearing of nasal congestion, but it may also cause an increase in blood pressure in patients who have high blood pressure. OTC drugs to relieve stuffy noses often contain more than one ingredient. Some of these products are marketed for allergy relief and others for colds. They usually contain both an antihistamine and a nasal decongestant. The decongestant ingredient unstuffs nasal passages; antihistamines dry up a runny nose. But some of these products may also contain aspirin or acetaminophen, and some contain a decongestant alone. Closely related products with similar names may have different ingredients. There are other medications in the form of nasal drops and sprays sold OTC for this purpose. As with pills, some of these are long acting (up to 12 hours) and some  are shorter acting. And, as with pills, most have some side effects. Many of the products contain a nasal decongestant such as oxymetazoline or phenylephrine. When used for more than three days or more often than directed by the label, these drops or sprays can sometimes cause a “rebound” effect, in which the nose gets more stuffy. Other nose drops and sprays are formulated with a saline (salt) solution and can be used for dry nose or to relieve clogged nasal passages.
• Dextromethorphan, an antitussive, is used to relieve a nonproductive cough caused by a cold, the flu, or other conditions.
Dextromethorphan comes as a liquid or as a lozenge to take by mouth. It is usually taken every 4-8 hours as needed. Do not take more than 120 mg of dextromethorphan in a 24-hour period. Refer to the package or prescription label to determine the amount contained in each dose. The lozenge should
dissolve slowly in your mouth. Drink plenty of water after taking a dose. Follow the directions on the package or prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand.
•  Antipyretics are fever-reducing medications; the term comes from the Greek word pyresis, which means fire. Ibuprofen (Motrin) and acetaminophen (Tylenol) are generally recognized as safe and effective single analgesic-antipyretic active ingredients. These two antipyretics can be taken
together or on an alternating 4 hour schedule. Ibuprofen provides greater temperature decrement and longer duration of antipyresis than acetaminophen when the two drugs are administered in approximately equal doses.
•  Never give aspirin to children or teenagers who have flu-like symptoms (and particularly fever) without first speaking to your doctor. Giving aspirin to children and teenagers who have influenza can cause a rare but serious illness called Reye syndrome. Reading the label becomes especially important when it comes to products containing aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) or their chemical cousins, other salicylates, which are used to reduce fever or treat headaches and other pain.
•  A person’s fluid needs are greater when that person has fever. Drink lots of fluids (water and other non-alcoholic, non-caffeinated beverages) to avoid becoming dehydrated. Start with sips of any fluid other than caffeinated beverages. Drinking too much fluid at once can bring on more vomiting. Electrolyte solutions available in drugstores are usually best. Sport  drinks contain a lot of sugar and can cause or worsen diarrhea.
•  If you have diarrhea, it’s a good idea to rest, eat only small amounts of food at a time, and drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration. Avoid over-the-counter diarrheal medications unless specifically instructed to use one by your doctor. Certain infections can be made worse by these drugs. When you have diarrhea, your body is trying to get rid of whatever food, virus, or other bug is causing it. OTC products marketed to stop diarrhea may contain loperamide (Imodium A-D), or attapulgite (Diasorb, Kaopectate and others), or bismuth subsalicylate (Pepto-Bismol and others).
•  Use either a traditional glass thermometer for each person [don’t cross-contaminate patients], or a digital thermometer with lots of  disposable sleeves. The thermometers are a few dollars. The sleeves are a dollar or so per hundred.

  • Get plenty of bed rest
  • Do not smoke
  • Restrict visitors to their home
  • Cover mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or
    sneezing.
  • Keep at least 3 feet away from others.
  • Patients should not leave the home during the period when
    they are most likely to be infectious to others (i.e., 5 days after onset of
    symptoms). When movement outside the home is necessary (e.g., for medical
    care), the patient should follow cough etiquette (i.e., cover the mouth and
    nose when coughing and sneezing) and wear procedure or surgical masks if
    available.

To protect the patients infected with influenza, individuals having contact with the patient, and the community in general, certain infection control measures should be practiced:

  • Wash hands often with warm soap and water, scrubbing for 15-20 seconds
  • Family members should wash hands or use waterless hand sanitizer after contact with the patient
  • Do not share eating utensils or drinks
  • Do not rub eyes, touch nose or mouth
  • Patients should cover their mouths and noses with tissue when coughing or sneezing, dispose of used tissues immediately after use and wash hands after using tissues
  • In general, wearing goggles or a face shield for routine contact with patients with pandemic influenza is not necessary. If sprays or splatter of infectious material is likely, goggles or a face shield should be worn as recommended for standard precautions.
  • In the absence of visible soiling of hands, approved alcohol-based products for hand disinfection are preferred over antimicrobial or plain soap and water because of their superior microbiocidal activity, reduced drying of the skin, and convenience.
  • Physically separate the patient with influenza from non-ill persons living in the home as much as possible.

In a pandemic influenza event, some individuals who are cared for at home may develop complications. Should complications develop, these individuals should seek medical care immediately, either by calling the doctor or going to an emergency room. Upon arrival, the receptionist or nurse should be told about the symptoms so that precautions can be taken (providing a mask and or separate
area for triage and evaluation).

D. Warning Signs to seek urgent medical care
In children, these include:
1.  High or prolonged fever for more than 4-5 days
2. Fast breathing or trouble breathing
3. Bluish skin color
4. Not drinking enough fluids
5. Changes in mental status, somnolence, irritability
6. Seizures, confusion or seizures
7. Influenza-like symptoms improve but then return with fever and worse cough
8. Worsening of underlying chronic medical conditions (for example, heart or lung disease, diabetes)
9. Cough becomes productive of yellow sputum

In adults,  these include:
1. High or prolonged fever for more than 4-5 days
2. Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
3. Cough becomes productive of yellow sputum
4. Pain or pressure in the chest
5. Near-fainting or fainting
6. Confusion or seizures
7. Severe or persistent vomiting [2 to 3 times in 24 hours] (vomiting is usually present in young children and elderly persons with influenza infection)
8. Skin color changes (lip and hands)
9.  Persons should seek medical attention at their physician’s office, urgent care facility or hospital emergency department if they are at high risk for the development of complications:
•   People age 65 and older, people of any age with chronic medical conditions and very young children are more likely to get complications from influenza.
•  Pregnant women also have an increased risk for pneumonia, lung insufficiency, and death after an influenza infection.

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Filed under __1. Disaster

Women’s issues when SHTF

(Survival Manual/ Prepper articles/ Women’s issues when SHTF)

women jobs

A.  SHTF Survival: Women’s Health
13 Jan 2011, Ready Nutrition, by Tess Pennington
Pasted from: http://readynutrition.com/resources/shtf-survival-womens-health_13012011/

Typically, in a post SHTF situation, sanitation conditions are going to be at a minimum (at the very least). Therefore, a woman’s personal hygiene is essential to her health and should be considered a priority. When sanitary conditions are not up to par, there is an increase of diseases such as cholera, typhoid and diphtheria. Typically, women and children are the most affected by poor sanitation conditions. Taking proper precautions and stocking up on sanitary items will help eliminate most issues regarding poor sanitation.

Tampons to the Rescue!
Did you know that tampons and sanitary napkins can be used for medical care? Due to their high absorbent nature, both items make good wound care dressings. In fact, the U.S. Army Medics have been using both items in combat situations. Luckily, since pads and tampons are considered a paper item, they have an indefinite shelf life, thus making them a good prepping investment. Remember to store sanitary items in a dry spot away from direct sunlight, heat and humidity.

Getting caught without a pad or tampon while on your period is not way to survive (or even get by) in an emergency situation. A great way to be prepared for a disaster is to make a personalized woman’s sanitation kit that will fit your monthly needs. Some items you can include are:

  • Midol or pain relieverwomen fem case
  • Disposable pads or tampons
  • Disposable towelettes or toilet paper
  • Soap
  • Disinfectant gel
  • Trash bag
  • Instant and reusable heating pad

Personal Hygiene Makes a Difference
A basic understanding of proper sanitation for women are necessary to ensure that diseases and illness do not occur. Taking time to clean yourself daily will help reduce the growth of bacteria, infections and diseases.

  • Cleansing – Using mild soap, completely clean the genital area. Clean the genital area every day, and more frequently during menstruation and after intercourse.
  • Menstruation – Change any sanitation item at least every 2-4 hours. And keep the area clean. Remember to wash your hands frequently as well.

Disposal of Feminine Sanitation Items
It is important to properly dispose of sanitary napkins, as they contain bodily fluids that could pose a health hazard to others. Methods of disposal may differ according to where you are and what you have available. However, tampons and feminine napkins do not decompose quickly. Therefore, the best way to dispose of used feminine napkins tampons is to burn them. The fire must be very hot in order to thoroughly destroy the used items. Incinerate any pads or tampons, as well as any paper items used to clean yourself with (disposable towelettes, toilet paper, etc).

As many of us are already aware, feminine napkins and tampons are quite costly, and take up a lot of space in the storage closet. However, as convenient as they are to have around, there are some alternative and less costly ways to deal with our visitor.

Alternatives to Disposable Sanitary Items
Diva Cup – The diva cup is a sanitary and efficient way to go without the typical pad or tampon. In fact, according to the website, this product is made from top quality, health care grade silicone, which is 100% latex-free, plastic-free, BPA-free and odorless. Consequently, due to it’s non-absorbent nature, it does not disrupt one’s natural vaginal environment. This is also very cost efficient, as well. A women typically spends $150-$200 a year on sanitary needs. Making the diva cup’s $30 cost point a cost effective alternative.

Cloth Sanitary Napkins – Another cost efficient way to maintain good sanitary means is with cloth menstrual napkins. Cloth sanitary napkins can be made from soft fabrics such as flannel or soft cotton, or can be sewn from worn fabrics. The cloth sanitary napkins can be cleaned after each use and put away for the next month’s use. Typically, a 3 pack set of cloth pads can be bought online at store sites such as Amazon for around $25, but inserts must also be bought for around $10. Or, if you are handy with the sewing machine, make your own.

If you choose to use any of the alternative methods, remember to thoroughly clean them for future use.

Sanitation is an often overlooked area of preparedness, and very well could be one of the most important components to survival. Maintaining proper sanitation during an emergency situation will ensure that you, as well as those around you will stay healthy.

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B.  Survival of women during SHTF
9 April 2012, SHTFSchool_Security, by SELCO
Pasted from: http://shtfschool.com/security/survival-of-women-during-shtf/

JL is a female member of my survival course and she asked a lot of woman specific questions about my SHTF experience. I decided to interview women because of that. I can talk about my experience but women live often in different world of feelings and emotions.

women despondant

I spoke with first woman named Una, now 52 (so was in her 30s back then) who took care of her family during that time. I asked JL to send me some questions she had on her mind and she did. If you have more women specific questions, write in comments. I recorded interview and translated to English (sorry my English not proper English).

Una started to describe her situation:
” My first and worst concern was what is gonna happen with my kids, I had two toddlers, and I did not have any clue what is gonna happen, or even what is gonna look like when hell broke lose. We did not want to believe it could happen. We heard the sound of big guns miles away and stories of violence, rape and murder but everything looked so peaceful.

At the beginning, actually right before everything started during my meetings with my friends and colleagues at work we discussed the deteriorating situation, and pretty soon I found myself faced with important decision: is it worth to send my kids to some more “secure” region or to some relatives to neighboring country, or keep them with me, and wait what happens.

I never had question am I going to leave this place, I found it normal to stay in my city, with husband, in my house. Looking back now I know it was big mistake.

If I want to describe my worst feeling trough all of that, it was not hunger, danger, fire, cold or anything like that. It was definitely the feeling of uncertain future, complete absence of feeling that I control coming events, I was helpless and just like a leaf in a storm. Anything could happen.

Anyway I choose to keep my kids with me, still do not know if it was right decision. Survival was tough even at places I planned to send them before everything started. I found out after everything was over.

Anyway they survived, but with some mental trauma like everybody else who survived.

Some of my friends who send their kids through some organization to other countries, had kids getting lost and disappear, and in some cases they found place somewhere else but the kids lost connection with parents. If parents survived they became strangers with each other.

Q: How did things start to change in your city?

A: Some very new emotions came up during that time, I was watching how city was dying slowly, together with normal behavior of people.

In the beginning people tried to stay together, I mean in the terms of neighbors helping each other. They had “normal” way of communication in the beginning. But as more bloody details, murder, rape and other crime became common trust faded and was replaced by fear.

Slowly people started to move away from each other and there was just us or them. Groups were not open anymore. No more welcoming.

I thought of myself as strong woman before, but that was before being without food and losing normal control of my life. I was teacher before everything, and of course I lost my job just like almost everyone. Nothing worked like it was supposed to work. I did not even have idea to continue to teach my kids at home, or try something similar, to survive took all my energy.

Q: Did you have any ideas of how you would survive if you were alone or not?

A: I was with my husband and family and I think I would not have survived alone. Not because I’m weak spirited woman lacking will to survive but simply because what I saw and experienced was so different and “out of this world” that I would have not been able to handle it alone.

Being in family or group makes you part of something, if other depend on you and you have other who go through same unreal situation it makes you fight harder. I understand those people who gave up and locked themselves in to die.

Q: Did you feel being a woman gave you any advantages or disadvantages?

A; For me I think it was better because I was a woman, I mean I was in a way protected from some of the hardest things, like finding food, resources or fighting. Hardest jobs were done by men, it was matter of luck for me. Woman are just more useful for certain kind of job like taking care of kids or wounded or sick people. Woman also have more feelings so some things like using violence does not come easy.

Q: Did you realize how bad it would get?

A: No, definitely not, many times I thought this can not be worst and then it got worse.

Fighting for survival can reduce people to animal that we all are. Sometimes it was hard to still see that they or we are human. So much that we think makes us human is removed and then there is something very basic and brutal left. It comes as surprise that people can act without emotions like compassion that make us human. Since that time I never thought about humans like before.

Q: How did the close people around you treat you?

A: I was protected, guarded in a way because I was a woman. It was not matter of some kind of gentlemen thing, I believe it was mostly about fact that I do my part of duties, like taking care for kids, food, trying to keep things clean etc. When I had to shoot, nobody would tell me: you are a woman you can’t do that. Everyone in group had to function and people treat you good if you do.

Q: What was your situation meaning how many people did you have as support, if any?

A: I spent that period in a group with 6 men, 3 woman and 4 kids.

Q: What are you doing today that prepares you for any similar event or how did that change the way you live?

A: I have food in my house for several months, weapons and I am ready to leave everything at the first sign that something similar gonna happen. Everything.

Q: Did anything happen that you handled differently than you assumed you would?

A: I was thinking a lot about that, and whatever I am gonna say it could be wrong. You get into situations that you cannot imagine so there was no way to predict what to do. I saw hard man break and weak man be strong. Many people who showed off strength to the outside world before things got really hard were those who broke first. I think they build up a mask to hide their inner weakness.

I broke too but people still relied on me so I had to do my part. I kept myself together but the whole situation left big scars inside of me.

There were quiet and normal people like you [Selco] who managed to come out of all this stronger and who got used to situation faster and without much suffering. Maybe you were born for that I still do not understand people like you.

Q: Were you concerned about hygiene and feminine body issues or would you say the lack of food water etc caused this not to be a concern?

A: How could lack of water etc not to be a concern? It was the opposite.

But over the time we learned that hygiene is not most important thing on the world, as dirty as that sounds. Other things occupied my mind, like with what to feed my kids, or how to make any kind of meal from very few things.

Q: What did you notice that women did differently to handle the situation, if anything?

A: I know for myself that special way of thinking helped me. I just close myself in my own world, I mean with my thinking and worrying, and it helped me. When my husband was worrying about when everything would come to end, and what are the chances for that, or trying to find some useful information about that, my biggest concern was how to make dinner, or to warm kids.

It was not about “men in the house” thing, that he thinks about the big issues and I do not.

I am educated person, but worrying about small, everyday things I think helped me trough all of that, without going crazy maybe. My concern was for example when kid asked me “can you make pancake?” how to answer him and make something that only looked like pancake, and tell him something like “those are special pancakes”. Those were the little missions that kept me from completely losing myself like others did.

Q: Did anything at all go the way you would have expected?

A: Nothing went as expected, actually I did not know what to expect. You cannot expect too much when you find yourself in a completely new situation, deadly situation.

I lived day by day without too much hope or expectation, at some point you stop caring. I survived, my family survived, and that’s it. I do not know what happens next time everything goes to hell again but I’m ready now to accept whatever comes. I easily could not be here anymore like many people I know. This stays with me for life so I appreciate every day.

Q: Did you have a source of spiritual strength?

A: I changed all phases, from completely not believing to completely believing and hoping that God will do something. I lost and gained faith many many times in that period. But yes, I think my kids and care for my kids gave me some will and strength to survive and live somehow normally. I think point of taking care for someone is really important in all this.
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C.  A Woman’s Life in a Post-SHTF World, by Skynome
Survival Blog.com, by James Wesley Rawles
Pasted from: http://www.survivalblog.com/2011/01/a-womans-life-in-a-post-shtf-w.html

Being a woman in TEOTWAWKI presents special challenges that many times in survival literature aren’t touched upon. So I’d like to talk about a few things that are specific to being female.

Menstruation
Let’s face it, that monthly visit creates a lot of waste from pads and tampons that in a SHTF scenario will be very difficult to dispose of.
Imagine if you will, that our infrastructure has broken down and trash is no longer being collected, you have to find a way to get rid of your own trash without creating a world where garbage floats in the streets when it rains. You’re doing okay though because all food scraps go to either the animals or the compost, paper is used as tinder, and jars are reused for whatever purpose you can find. However, synthetic pads and tampons, much like baby diapers, must be disposed of in a way that doesn’t become toxic for your family. So, what do you do?

My suggestion is go for reusable.
I know, in our modern society that reusable pads may be considered “gross” but as long as you wash them after every use they’re just as clean as single use synthetic, and some argue that they’re actually healthier for you.
A major plus to reusable in a SHTF scenario is that you can make them out of any fabric you have available as long as you have some needle and thread (though cotton and flannel work best). You can find patterns and suppliers online; just do a quick Google search.
Another reusable option is a diva/moon cup. A single one can last up to a year so it would be simple to stockpile a 5 year supply just in case. If the thought of reusable supplies still grosses you out just a bit and you don’t think you’ll ever go that route unless you’re living after TEOTWAWKI then you’ll want to keep a stock of single use pads or tampons for your short-term preps.
The best way I’ve found to do this is a combination of couponing and freebies. Almost all companies that make feminine products offer free samples through their web sites, and all of those free samples come with a collection of coupons. Simply go to the manufacturer’s web site, order your free sample (some will let you order a free sample once every 6 weeks), and then use the coupons combined with sales to lay in a large, almost free stash of your feminine products.

Birth Control
I consider this a female issue because females are the ones who get pregnant and therefore need to know what to do with their bodies to prevent pregnancy (besides the obvious). Now, in a TEOTWAWKI life even though you are happily married a recently collapsed society isn’t exactly the ideal place for a newborn.

women BCMaybe after the first year or two your survival retreat group will all be working well together, the gardens will be producing well and you will have mastered the art of hunting under slightly different conditions. At that point, you may want to try and have children but until then, you’ll probably need some birth control.
I personally am not a fan of condoms for long-term storage, they’re bulky, expensive, have a short shelf life, and you have to find a safe way to dispose of them. I would recommend either laying in a years worth of the pill or (if you have someone in your household/retreat group that knows how to administer this) the depo-provera shot. Though, with depo you have to find a safe way to dispose of a used needle. It’s a decision you have to make based on what exactly you’re preparing for and what you feel most comfortable with using as birth control now.
One thing I do not recommend is storing birth control that you have never personally used. Every woman reacts differently to the hormones used in birth control and the time to find out that your reaction is negative is not post-SHTF.

Another option for birth control is using natural family planning. This form of birth control helps you to fully understand your body and its cycle and how to know when you’re fertile and when you’re not. This is something highly encouraged by the Catholic Church so you’ll find a lot of literature about it put out by the Catholic Church. You can also receive training on NFP at most parishes throughout the country. If you’re not comfortable learning about NFP through the Catholic Church you can do an Amazon search for natural family planning and should be able to find books non-catholic books about it. I’ve read quite a few articles on survivalblog relating to pregnancy and nursing so I won’t go into what to do if the birth control fails.

Health Issues
Though both men and women can break a bone, suffer a heart attack, or end up with cancer there are certain diseases that affect women more often or more severely than men, those are the ones I’d like to briefly discuss.

Osteoporosis makes your bones weak and therefore more likely to break. If society collapses you can bet women will be doing a lot more manual labor which will be harder on the bones, and if those bones are weakened by Osteoporosis and break, life will suddenly become much more difficult. The best way to combat Osteoporosis is with a diet full of calcium and vitamin D and by keeping in shape.

Regular exercise is pretty easy to maintain, the calcium and vitamin D may not be. It’s important to not only take calcium and vitamin D supplements now but to be sure you have a good stock of them in your long-term storage. You’ll also want to lay in a good supply of freeze-dried foods high in calcium and vitamin and seeds for foods you can grow fresh.

women vitsSome great sources of vitamin D and calcium include: milk, cheese, yogurt, collard greens, kale, bok choy, broccoli, soybeans, white beans, and almonds.

Heart disease is the number one killer of women in the US; I don’t imagine the stress of living life after TEOTWAWKI would lessen that number.

Luckily some of the heart healthiest foods out there are also wonderful for long term food storage including olive oil (which [if it is in plastic bottles] can be frozen for long term use), beans, peas, and lentils, fish (if your retreat is near a water source good for fishing), and whole grains. Of course regular exercise is also helpful.

Depression is much more common in women than in men for a variety of hormone reasons. Because of this if you have ever suffered from depression, post-partum depression, have a family history of depression, or currently suffer from mild depression it is a good idea to stock up on anti-depressants. Because I suffered post-partum depression with my first child it was easy for me to stock up on anti-depressants through my other two pregnancies.

If you don’t have a doctor that will prescribe you anti-depressants find one who will, survivalblog has a lot of good advice on stocking up on prescription medications so I won’t go into that. Be sure you are fully aware of all side effects of whatever anti-depressants you decide to go with, and if possible use it before SHTF. An example on why you should know exactly how it will affect you, the same anti-depressant that helped me recover from post-partum depression caused a friend of mine to have a psychotic break, everyone reacts differently to medications.

Menopause happens to all women so it’s a good idea to store some supplements that help make the transition easier. Even if you’re still young, they’re good to store for any older members of your family. It’s also a good idea to talk to your mom about the average age women in the family start going through menopause that way you can prepared for it.

Also, make sure you know your family history relating to all uterine conditions. For example, if ovarian cysts run in the family start getting checked for them now and know the symptoms if a cyst ruptures because if that happens post-SHTF you could bleed to death.

Being Girlywomen girlie
This is the section that to some may seem frivolous but the fact is women are different from men and just like men need to do things that make them feel manly, girls need to feel girly. Feeling girly is different from being high maintenance.
I’m about as far from what most would consider girly as possible, I get my hair cut once, maybe twice a year and never do more to it than run a brush through it. I rarely shave my legs, I haven’t worn makeup since my last school dance (which was quite a few years ago), and I only wear dresses to the really important church holidays.
However, while I was in Navy boot camp my drill sergeants (Recruit Division Commanders or RDCs) did everything they could to strip away our femininity. We were required to use men’s body wash, shampoo, and deodorant, no makeup allowed, no lotions; we couldn’t even shave our legs. Because of this what I looked forward to the most after getting out of boot camp was not better food or no longer being yelled at, it was being able to use a really nice lotion.

I began to really understand how different women are from men, yes, we can get any job a man can, and we can work just as hard when doing manual labor but we are female and females were made differently and we need to feel like females every now and then. In a post-SHTF world shaved legs and a pedicure really don’t matter when it comes to survival but what it can do for morale is huge.

If you have the chance to stock up on some fun feminine items on the cheap do it. I tend to find razors, pretty smelling lotions, shampoos, and conditioners, nail polish, and hair dye for free to almost free at CVS or Walgreen’s when combining manufacturers’ coupons with in-store coupons and sales.
If you are stowing away basic patterns so you can make your own clothes when the clothing stores are no longer stocked it would be a good idea to throw in a pattern or two for dresses.

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Declining antibiotic effectiveness

(News & Editorial/ Declining antibiotic effectiveness)

The decline in antibiotic effectiveness/ the increase in bacterial resistance.

antibiotics decline

[Graph showing antibody discovery. Think to yourself – each antibiotic is like a reserve oil field. We have used up most of the reserves and are finding fewer and fewer, our need  (because of increased population and decreasing effectiveness) is increasing while the flow is rapidly decreasing. Graph pasted from: http://www.drrebecca.com/2011/05/antibiotics-may-not-be-here-to-stay.html]

A.  Expert warning: Resistance to antibiotics to be apocalyptic
25 January 2013, Medicalxpress.com,  by Lin Edwards in Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes
Pasted from:  http://medicalxpress.com/news/2013-01-expert-resistance-antibiotics-apocalyptic.html

(Medical Xpress)—The chief medical officer for Britain’s Department of Health has issued a warning that resistance to bacteria is a more urgent threat to humanity than global warming, with bacteria becoming resistant to current antibiotics at an alarming rate, and there are almost no new antibiotics in the pipeline. Professor Dame Sally Davies spoke to British members of parliament on a science and technology committee and told them the increasing resistance of bacteria could soon make even a routine operation a deadly option because of the possibility of an infection that would have no effective treatment. She said that the real “apocalyptic scenario” was that within a couple of decades people will die from infections because we will have “run out of antibiotics” and there are no wonder drugs in the pipeline.

She added that it is a serious global problem and antibiotics are not being used effectively. The development of antibiotics in the 1940s was one of the greatest advances in medicine, but they are becoming increasingly ineffective as bacteria become resistant to them.

•  Prof. Davies said there is only one effective antibiotic left for gonorrhea and 80% of cases are resistant to tetracycline.
•  Tuberculosis is becoming increasingly resistant and there are around 150,000 deaths globally from multi-antibiotic resistant tuberculosis each year.
•  Staphylococcal and urinary tract infections are now resistant to penicillin, and
•  MRSA (methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus) is increasingly prevalent, especially in health care facilities.

Prof. Davies said there is “a broken market model” for the development of new antibiotics, which means there could be no new antibiotics in the future.
The pharmaceutical industry is concentrating its efforts on more profitable treatments such as drugs for chronic diseases, which has led to a reduction in research aiming to find or develop new antibiotics.
The World Health Organization has also warned of a coming post-antibiotic era in which common ailments cured by antibiotics will once again be fatal. Director-General Margaret Chan said a post-antibiotic era would mean even a common scratch or a strep throat could again lead to uncurable infections and death. In March, Prof. Davies will be releasing her annual report, which will include strategies to solve this global problem. She said it was a serious issue that needs to be tackled urgently, and will be asking the Cabinet Office to add it to the national risk register. She also urged doctors to be more cautious about how they prescribe antibiotics and patients to be more responsible in taking them (by taking the entire course when antibiotics are prescribed).

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B.  World Faces Global Pandemic Of Antibiotic Resistance, Experts Warn
18 Sep. 2008, ScienceDaily.com, The following news story is reprinted from materials provided by BMJ-British Medical Journal, via EurekAlert!, a service of AAAS.
Pasted from:  http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080918192836.htm

Vital components of modern medicine such as major surgery, organ transplantation, and cancer chemotherapy will be threatened if antibiotic resistance is not tackled urgently, warn experts on bmj.com.

A concerted global response is needed to address rising rates of bacterial resistance caused by the use and abuse of antibiotics or “we will return to the pre-antibiotic era”, write Professor Otto Cars and colleagues in an editorial.

All antibiotic use “uses up” some of the effectiveness of that antibiotic, diminishing the ability to use it in the future, write the authors, and antibiotics can no longer be considered as a renewable source.

They point out that existing antibiotics are losing their effect at an alarming pace, while the development of new antibiotics is declining. More than a dozen new classes of antibiotics were developed between 1930 and 1970, but only two new classes have been developed since then.

According to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, the most important disease threat in Europe is from micro-organisms that have become resistant to antibiotics. As far back as 2000, the World Health Organisation was calling for a massive effort to address the problem of antimicrobial resistance to prevent the “health catastrophe of tomorrow”.
So why has so little been done to address the problem of resistance, ask the authors?
Antibiotics are over prescribed, still illegally sold over the counter in some EU countries, and self medication with leftover medicines is commonplace.

There are alarming reports about serious consequences of antibiotic resistance from all around the world. However, there is still a dearth of data on the magnitude and burden of antibiotic resistance, or its economic impact on individuals, health care, and society. This, they suggest, may explain why there has been little response to this public health threat from politicians, public health workers, and consumers.
In addition, there are significant scientific challenges but few incentives to developing new antibiotics, state the authors.

The authors believe that priority must be given to the most urgently needed antibiotics and incentives given for developing antibacterials with new mechanisms of action. In addition, “the use of new antibiotics must be safeguarded by regulations and practices that ensure rational use, to avoid repeating the mistakes we have made by overusing the old ones”, they say.

They point out that reducing consumer demand could be the strongest force to driving change—individuals must be educated to understand that their choice to use an antibiotic will affect the possibility of effectively treating bacterial infections in other people.
But, they claim, the ultimate responsibility for coordination and resources rests with national governments, WHO and other international stakeholders.
Not only is there an urgent need for up-to-date information on the level of antibiotic resistance, but also for evidence of effective interventions for the prevention and control of antibiotic resistance at national and local levels, while more focus is needed on infectious diseases, they conclude.

antibiotics infectious disease

Crude Death Rate for Infectious diseases. Pasted from: http://www.asis.org/Bulletin/Oct-11/OctNov11_Fuller.html
[The above chart is interesting, it shows the past; however, for the last 30 years, new classes of antibiotics have declined to 17% of their 1983 number. Infectious disease has been significantly reduced since 1900. Be aware: Bacteria can double their population size in 20 minutes. As soon as pressure is reduced from the black box of disease control, this reproductive genie will pop out and within a few years eliminate the Maginot Line we built during the heyday of modern antibiotics.
What goes up, comes back down. What goes down, comes back up…]

antibiotics new discoveries

[Mr. Larry comment:
1.  As you can see from the chart at the top of this post there is a rapid decline in antibiotic effectiveness, or put another way, an increase in bacterial resistance to the antibiotics.
2.  The chart immediately above shows a huge 83% decline in the development of new antibiotics.
3. The middle chart: Crude Death Rate for Infectious diseases shows the decline in death rate from infectious diseases between 1900 and about 1995. The rate  declined steadily with each new disease that was “conquered” by the new classes of antibiotics.

Now that we have nearly ceased developing new classes of antibiotics to defeat the super microbes, I expect the death rate to again turn up, inversely retracing  its decline. The rise to pre 1900 infectious death levels may occur faster than the decline for three reasons:
__a) Modern  life styles, promiscuity and the belief that medicine will always heal your ailments are prevalent, allowing individuals to engage in a wide range of sports, sexual, and drug related activities that are risky.
__b) Super microbes will increasingly kill their host and develop deeper entrenchment in the very medical facilities – places where people go for healing.
__c) Designer microbes or virus (killer flu, etc.) will eventually get out of the lab or be used from a stockpile.  A genie that is once exposed to the “wild” may never go back in the bottle.
The “come back” may not occur while the world economic system continues to sputter along, but would become very significant should a SHTF event occur, we could easily see a return or rhyme of Medieval style pestilence. Remember, it was our previous inoculations, our relatively healthy eating, clean drinking water, and personal sanitation that is currently floating Mankind’s essentially pandemic free conditions; change the conditions in our ecological petri dish and the germs will again spread. Its Nature’s way.]

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About famine

(News & Editorial: About famine)

A.  Famine an often unnatural disaster

__1.  ‘Tombstone: The Great Chinese Famine, 1958-1962,’
 by Yang Jisheng
7 Dec 2012, New York Times Sunday Book Review, news article by JONATHAN MIRSKY
Pasted from: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/09/books/review/tombstone-the-great-chinese-famine-1958-1962-by-yang-jisheng.html?pagewanted=2&_r=0

famine chinaA rice field in what is now Guangdong Province, 1958.

In the summer of 1962, China’s president, Liu Shaoqi, warned Mao Zedong that “history will record the role you and I played in the starvation of so many people, and the cannibalism will also be memorialized!” Liu had visited Hunan, his home province as well as Mao’s, where almost a million people died of hunger. Some of the survivors had eaten dead bodies or had killed and eaten their comrades. In “Tombstone,” an eye-­opening study of the worst famine in history, Yang Jisheng concludes that 36 million Chinese starved to death in the years between 1958 and 1962, while 40 million others failed to be born, which means that “China’s total population loss during the Great Famine then comes to 76 million.”


__2.  Tombstone: The Great Chinese Famine, 1958-1962
By Yang Jisheng,  Translated by Stacy Mosher and Guo Jian,  629 pp. Farrar, Straus & Giroux.
There are good earlier studies of the famine and one excellent recent one, “Mao’s Great Famine” by Frank Dikötter, but Yang’s is significant because he lives in China and is boldly unsparing. Mao’s rule, he writes, “became a secular theocracy. . . . Divergence from Mao’s views was heresy. . . . Dread and falsehood were thus both the result and the lifeblood of totalitarianism.” This political system, he argues, “caused the degeneration of the national character of the Chinese people.”

Yang, who was born in 1940, is a well-known veteran journalist and a Communist Party member. Before I quote the following sentence, remember that a huge portrait of Chairman Mao still hangs over the main gate into Beijing’s Forbidden City and can be seen from every corner of Tiananmen Square, where his embalmed body lies in an elaborate mausoleum. Despite this continued public veneration, Yang looks squarely at the real chairman: “In power, Mao became immersed in China’s traditional monarchal culture and Lenin and Stalin’s ‘dictatorship of the proletariat.’ . . . When Mao was provided with a list of slogans for his approval, he personally added one: ‘Long Live Chairman Mao.’ ” Two years ago, in an interview with the journalist Ian Johnson, Yang remarked that he views the famine “as part of the totalitarian system that China had at the time. The chief culprit was Mao.”

From the early 1990s, Yang writes, he began combing normally closed official archives containing confidential reports of the ravages of the famine, and reading accounts of the official killing of protesters. He found references to cannibalism and interviewed men and women who survived by eating human flesh.

Chinese statistics are always overwhelming, so Yang helps us to conceptualize what 36 million deaths actually means. It is, he writes, “450 times the number of people killed by the atomic bomb dropped on Nagasaki” and “greater than the number of people killed in World War I.” It also, he insists, “outstripped the ravages of World War II.” While 40 to 50 million died in that war, it stretched over seven or eight years, while most deaths in the great Chinese famine, he notes, were “concentrated in a six-month period.” The famine occurred neither during a war nor in a period of natural calamity. When mentioned in China, which is rarely, bad weather or Russian treachery are usually blamed for this disaster, and both are knowledgeably dismissed by Yang.

The most staggering and detailed chapter in Yang’s narrative relates what happened in Xinyang Prefecture, in Henan Province. A lush region, it was “the economic engine of the province,” with a population in 1958 of 8.5 million. Mao’s policies had driven the peasants from their individual small holdings; working communally, they were now forced to yield almost everything to the state, either to feed the cities or — crazily — to increase exports. The peasants were allotted enough grain for just a few months. In Xinyang alone, Yang calculates, over a million people died.

Mao had pronounced that the family, in the new order of collective farming and eating, was no longer necessary. Liu Shaoqi, reliably sycophantic, agreed: “The family is a historically produced phenomenon and will be eliminated.” Grain production plummeted, the communal kitchens collapsed. As yields dived, Zhou Enlai and other leaders, “the falcons and hounds of evil,” as Yang describes them, assured Mao that agricultural production had in fact soared. Mao himself proclaimed that under the new dispensation yields could be exponentially higher. “Tell the peasants to resume eating chaff and herbs for half the year,” he said, “and after some hardship for one or two or three years things will turn around.”


__3.   Tombstone: The Great Chinese Famine, 1958-1962
By Yang Jisheng, Translated by Stacy Mosher and Guo Jian, 629 pp. Farrar, Straus & Giroux.

A journalist reporting on Xinyang at the time saw the desperation of ordinary people. Years later, he told Yang that he had witnessed a Party secretary — during the famine, cadres were well fed — treating his guests to a local delicacy. But he knew what happened to people who recorded the truth, so he said nothing: “How could I dare to write an internal reference report?” Indeed. Liu Shaoqi confronted Mao, who remembered all slights, and during the Cultural Revolution he was accused of being a traitor and an enemy agent. Expelled from the Party, he died alone, uncared for, anonymous.

Of course, “Tombstone” has been banned in China, but in 2008 it was published in Hong Kong in two mighty volumes. Pirated texts and Internet summaries soon slipped over the border. This English version, although substantial, is roughly half the size of the original. Its eloquent translators, Stacy Mosher and Guo Jian, say their aim, like the author’s, is to “present the tragedy in all its horror” and to render Yang’s searching analysis in a manner that is both accessible to general readers and informative for specialists. There is much in this readable “Tombstone” I needed to know.

Yang writes that one reason for the book’s title is to establish a memorial for the uncle who raised him like a son and starved to death in 1959. At the time a devout believer in the Party and ignorant of the extent of what was going on in the country at large, Yang felt that everything, no matter how difficult, was part of China’s battle for a new socialist order. Discovering official secrets during his work as a young journalist, he began to lose his faith. His real “awakening,” however, came after the 1989 Tiananmen massacre: “The blood of those young students cleansed my brain of all the lies I had accepted over the previous decades.” This is brave talk. Words and phrases associated with “Tiananmen” remain blocked on China’s Internet.

Nowadays, Yang asserts, “rulers and ordinary citizens alike know in their hearts that the totalitarian system has reached its end.” He hopes “Tombstone” will help banish the “historical amnesia imposed by those in power” and spur his countrymen to “renounce man-made calamity, darkness and evil.” While guardedly hopeful about the rise of democracy, Yang is ultimately a realist. Despite China’s economic and social transformation, this courageous man concludes, “the political system remains unchanged.” “Tombstone” doesn’t directly challenge China’s current regime, nor is its author part of an organized movement. And so, unlike the Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo, Yang Jisheng is not serving a long prison sentence. But he has driven a stake through the hearts of Mao Zedong and the party he helped found.

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B.  Hunger and Famine
2011, Illinois State University, by Robert Dirks
Pasted from: http://www.academia.edu/484324/Hunger_and_Famine

Introduction
Hunger takes many forms:
1) It smolders as chronic under nutrition.
2) It can flare up intermittently, sometimes annually, because food stores are never quite sufficient to last until next harvest.
3) Occasionally, hunger erupts in famine, an episode of want so acute as to precipitate the breakdown of societies’ most fundamental institutions.
Whatever the form, the costs are immense. Eighteen million people die every year from hunger-related causes.The biggest known loss of life from a single famine occurred between 1959 and 1961 when at least 15 million people died.

What causes hunger and leads to such tragic consequences? Certainly it is not always shortcomings in food production. Pockets of hunger exist within some of the most agriculturally productive countries in the world, including the United States. Great regions of persistent famine exist on a planet producing more than enough food for everyone. Currently, parts of Africa suffer the most from famine. Formerly, it was areas of Asia and before that Europe.

Were famine fire, the historical pattern would suggest arson or some other human agency. In fact, careful studies never fail to disclose human causes. I discuss some of these in the first part of this essay. I turn my attention to effects in the second part.

Causes of Famine
Conditions and events of many sorts can contribute to the development of famine. These include natural disasters (e.g., flood, plant disease) and technological failures (e.g., unreliable storage, destructive farming practices) as well as various social, economic, and political factors (e.g., class inequities, market collapse, war). Rarely, if ever, can we attribute a particular famine to any single cause. Take, for example, the most recent famines that have plagued portions of Africa’s Sahel, an arid to semi-arid belt just south of the Sahara Desert.  

As some popular accounts would have it, these were natural disasters caused by drought, one beginning in 1968, another in 1984. Yet, the pastoralists of the region, the chief victims, have coped with periods of unusually scant rainfall for centuries. Key to their survival was their nomadic lifestyle and the movement of livestock over great distances when necessary. No less important was their practice of maintaining larger than needed herds during normal times as insurance against catastrophic loss during exceptionally dry years. While this double-edged strategy was never entirely fail-safe, it did for the most part prevent major catastrophes.

So what happened? For one thing, overgrazing and the reduction of grass cover; desertification was prevented so long as the pastoral tribes moved their herds throughout the year. But, the construction of boreholes by development agencies (to provide water) eliminated the incentive to move. Political concerns also conspired against migration; the enforcement of  international political boundaries became stricter. Later on, crop production began to press into the southern reaches of the region decreasing the availability of pasture. To make matters worse, farmers began turning to cotton and other cash crops, reducing the opportunity to graze animals on grain stubble. The commercialization of the region’s economy created yet another hazard finally realized when drought set in. No longer able to rely on traditional reciprocities with farmers (who now wanted money for their grain) but more dependent than ever on grain because of the poor condition of their herds, the pastoralists brought increasing numbers of animals to market. This upsurge in supply sent cattle prices plunging. Grossly disadvantaged in the marketplace and unable to meet their Caloric requirements, the pastoralists starved, their physical condition deteriorating more than any other Sahelian people. There were 100,000 starvation-related deaths in the region in 1973. Yet, throughout the crisis years, only one Sahelian country, Mauritania (where much of the economy depends on mining), fell short of producing enough food to feed its total population. In addition to illustrating causal complexity, what happened in the Sahelal so demonstrates that disastrous situations do not develop overnight. The stage for famine is often set decades or more prior to the death of the first victim. More or less remote occurrences, such as those that upset traditional Sahelian grazing patterns, are sometimes referred to as “underlying causes.” More immediate events like drought are usually “the last straw.”   That straw can break the camel’s back but only if there are underlying weaknesses or pre-existing burdens, and these are usually traceable to cultural developments.

Foraging, Food production, and Famine
One such development is agriculture, the very foundation of civilization and all modern food systems. Jared Diamond calls it “the worst mistake in the history of the human race.”

Diamond’s label represents a drastic revision of prehistory. Not long ago nobody doubted that the transition from foraging (hunting and gathering) to cultivation brought with it more bountiful and reliable food supplies and that nutritional well-being increased as a result. Studies showing that modern foragers are generally well nourished first led scholars to question this received wisdom. Later, paleo pathological data gleaned from examinations of prehistoric skeletal materials provided more direct evidence that agriculture was not the great blessing once imaged. Mark Cohen, comparing a variety of information collected from the bones of both foragers and early agriculturalists came to the conclusion that at best farming did nothing to improve nutritional conditions.

Signs of nutritional stress enscribed in tooth enamel indicate worse, that people who gave up foraging inadvertently traded in relatively mild bouts with starvation in exchange for episodes of stark famine. My research using famine records from the Standard Cross-Cultural Sample (SCCS) support this view, particularly when the experience of foragers in especially difficult environments is discounted. Cohen reminds us that before their displacement by agriculturalists, foragers did not live in the harshest habitats earth has to offer.

Following up on this point and removing foragers occupying especially difficult habitats (arctic, sub-arctic, and desert regions) from consideration, I found a significantly greater occurrence of famine among farmers and herders than among foragers.

If agriculture developed as a solution to increasing population and hunger, as Cohen believes, then it would appear that the solution did no more than exacerbate the problem.

Population and Famine
Population growth beyond society’s means of subsistence is widely regarded as an underlying cause of hunger and famine. The problem, as Thomas Malthus pointed out near two centuries ago, is that populations unchecked grow exponentially.

The ability to provide food increases linearly. Consequently, unless society institutes preventive checks on growth– say, for instance, by tolerating abortions – starvation and violent efforts to avoid it are inevitable. The temptation to neglect preventive checks is probably the greatest in agricultural societies in which children can perform simple but economically important tasks.

This presents no problem so long as extra hands increase food supply beyond the additional cost of feeding them. Overpopulation begins once this is no longer the case. For the shifting cultivator, it becomes a matter of too many people attempting to wrest a living from an area to allow soils adequate recovery time between crops. Thus, among shifting cultivators, susceptibility to famine increases with population density.

This is not so among intensive agriculturalists, farmers who have eliminated long fallows by applying manures and irrigation silts to their fields. These ecological imports liberate populations from the natural constraints of soil restoration cycles. This encourages growth and provides an opening for abroad range of technological and organization variables to affect how many people a particular agricultural region can safely support. Once human ecologies become open systems and their productivity depends heavily on non-local resources it becomes impossible to speak of any necessary connection between population growth and the likelihood of famine. An expanding population may go further and further afield in its quest for food. Population pressure has spurred the discovery of new food resources. In some cases, it has pushed standards of living upward by driving trade and industrial development. Nevertheless, the earth’s resources are infinite. For a particular locality, the consequences of unabashedly pro-natal attitudes (favoring reproduction) are not entirely as Malthus predicted; but for the world as a whole, they are almost certainly inescapable.

World Economic System and Famine
Studies of hunger and famine in the Third World frequently point to foreign economic intrusions and changes initiated in the name of “development” as important causes. Various schemes promoting international agribusiness have come under especially severe criticism in recent years. Critics argue that the business of agribusiness, contrary to public claims, is not to feed the world, but to turn a profit. This causes food to flow from where it is needed most to where it can fetch the highest price.

Third World governments, eager for export income, participate in this process by encouraging farmers to raise commodities for the world market at the expense of growing traditional food crops. The upshot in the case of Africa has been a steady decline in per capita food production concurrent with a dramatic increase in the production of such crops as coffee and tea.

Historically, the displacement of traditional systems devoted to locally important subsistence foods was well underway by the early seventeenth century. famine BosniaPlanters, then, no less than modern apologists for international agribusiness, saw their enterprises as progressive and indigenous regimes as backward. It counted for naught that they were the products of hundreds of years of biological and cultural evolution. But, from the standpoint of local food supply, it may be that backwardness has its advantages. Anthropologists often marvel at the ingenuity of traditional food economies and how generations of trial and error have paid off in practices closely attuned to local conditions. Elaborate backup systems, including complex institutions for food redistribution and knowledge of so-called “famine foods,” are seen as part of this accumulated wisdom. While no one contends that lessons from the past can lead to an absolutely fail-safe food system, it has been argued that relatively long-standing ones may be inherently less prone to disastrous breakdowns than newer orders introduced in the name of progress. [ie., “Just in time” grocery shelf  restocking? Mr. Larry]

While recent cross-cultural research does not support this sweeping contention, it does suggest that certain specific economic changes introduced from abroad have repeatedly contributed to the development of food emergencies.

The introduction of foreign trade is one such change. In the past, societies new to trade have been far more susceptible to famine than those having long histories of commerce with other nations. Another change significantly associated with the occurrence of famine worldwide is increased land use. Often this has been at the expense of foragers, pastoralists, or shifting agriculturalists. The practice of the French in colonial Vietnam was to drive peasants from villages in sparsely populated areas and declare the land “unused.” Between 1860 and 1931, large areas formerly devoted to subsistence production were seized by this and various others means and converted to export agriculture. The Vietnamese diet went into steady decline. The final blow came during World War II when under Japanese occupation the entire food system collapsed and more than two million Vietnamese starved to death.

The historical relationship between increased land use and famine susceptibility ought to be especially worrisome at present given the expansion of intensive farming and ranching in tropical forest regions.

Class Inequity, Poverty, and Famine
W.R. Aykroyd, an international authority on nutrition, asserts that all famine may be called “class famines” since it is always the poor who die.

While this may be true, it is not the case that societies with formal class systems have had a monopoly on famine. They appear in fact to be no more prone to famine than their more egalitarian counterparts.

Yet when famine does strike the class-structure society it tends to be especially severe, particularly if the class (or caste) system is relatively complex.

I suspect the reason is because complex systems restrict individuals’ income opportunities to relatively narrow occupational spheres. The makes it possible for economic disturbances to have unequal effects. When the brunt of deprivation falls on a limited segment of society its effects are amplified. This follows from the simple rule that the weight of a burden placed on the shoulders of a few is always more difficult to be than when it is carried equally by many.

Food Entitlements and Famine
Amartya Sen believes that the occurrence of famine is culturally conditioned through society’s rules of ownership and exchange.

These define legal abilities to command resources, including food. Famine in Sen’s view arises when many people simultaneously find themselves unable to survive on the commodities to which they are legally entitled. Sen thinks it is a mistake to think most famines arise from declines in overall food availability. Even granting unusual scarcity, whether starvation actually occurs is almost always a matter of who is entitled legally to whatever food is available. Consider farmers who suffer crop failure. They experience both a reduction in food supply and a loss of direct entitlement to food (i.e., what they own as the fruits of their rightful land and labor). Yet when they and their families starve, it is usually not because there is absolutely no food to be had anywhere. Rather, it is because the food they own or can acquire through trade is inadequate. This distinction, the difference between the general availability of food and the food an individual is entitled to by the rules of ownership and exchange, is of utmost importance. It helps explain why so often it is only some members of society that go hungry. It helps explain, for instance, why Sahelians starved in the early 1970s and their countrymen to the south did not. The influence of legal entitlements on the prospects for famine is seen in comparing societies having some kind of collective ownership with those in which individual ownership is the rule. My research shows that famine occurs less often in non-industrial societies where land and other properties are held collectively.

With collective ownership, one person’s failure to obtain food can only be part of a general shortage. In contrast, individualized property rights allow the effects of untoward events to fall disproportionately on some people. Thus, the potential for famine increases because the immediate event that causes some members of society to starve does not have to be as great as one that reduces food availability for everyone. The influence of entitlements on the prospects for famine can also be seen in comparing societies subscribing to different rules of exchange. On the one hand, there are societies in which members are entitled to food as a status right. Social relationships, such as kinship, encumber individual ownership and compel sharing. On the other hand, there are societies in which members must trade for food. Trade allows the legal right to deny food to others. To put it bluntly, people can be allowed to starve without violating their rights in the slightest. I have found that famine tends to be relatively more severe where trade rather than social status is the cornerstone of exchange.

I believe this is because emergencies are prone to become more serious if people who have food are under no strong obligation to feed the starving. In light of the apparent dangers associated with private ownership and trade, what accounts for the relatively famine-free histories of many modern capitalist economies? It is certainly not because they are immune to disasters nor because they have eradicated poverty. What stands between disaster and poverty on the one hand and starvation on the other are political entitlements, government programs that range from price supports through unemployment benefits and child welfare.

One suspects that by building similar fail-safe programs – at the very least programs that prevent chronic under nutrition (a powerful predictor of famine) – we actually would be doing more to foster the nutritional security of famine-prone nations than we are now doing through efforts to boost food production.

Effects of Famine
Famine has both immediate and long-term effects. Its immediate biological effects include epidemics of disease and sharp increases in mortality. Behaviorally, many conventions of ordinary life disappear. Social contacts, for example, are avoided rather than sought out. Hunger’s long-term effects include physical and psychological scars (e.g., developmental abnormalities and mental illness). In addition, hunger and famine often condition profound transformations in culture (e.g., changes in food habits, forms of government, and magical and religious practices).

Biological Effects
Starvation, meaning a condition in which the body draws on its own reserves for energy, becomes a disease once it begins to damage active tissue. This condition is referred to as “general starvation.” In children, kwashiorkor and marasmus (protein-calorie malnutritional diseases) show up early.
• Before gross weight loss is seen in older victims, there is loss of endurance.
• As general starvation becomes more advanced, victims become apathetic and a series of physical symptoms unfolds, including
 • rapid weight loss,
 • edema
(abnormal accumulations of fluids in parts of the body)
• and diarrhea.

General starvation increases susceptibility to many contagious diseases.
• Individual resistance is undermined at every line of defense.
• As protein is lost, protective surface such as skin and mucous membranes lose their integrity and fail as barriers against the invasion of pathogens.
• Infectious agents once inside the body encounter an impaired immune system.
• Population dislocations and the overcrowding of public facilities favor the spread of infections at the community level.
• Energy-sparing behavioral economies cause inattention to personal hygiene and public sanitation.
• The infections facilitated by famine accelerate the course of general starvation by increasing the body’s nutritional demands. During famines more people die of contagious diseases that of starvation itself.
• Famine’s survivors come away with both physical and mental scars. On the physical side, starvation can result in the curtailment of growth and permanent stunting.
• Work capacity and productivity suffer.

Careful investigation of the long-term consequences of the Dutch Hunger Winter(1944-1945) disclosed lasting damage among those who lived through it while still in their mothers’ wombs. Problems included central nervous system abnormalities detected in military inductees nineteen years later.

Among the Kaiadilt, a group of Australian Aborigines, psychiatric problems arising from famine, including chronic depression, were still evident some twenty years after rescue.

famine group

Social and Cultural Effects
Behavior amidst famine shows certain regularities.
1) The first response, particularly when food emergencies are unfamiliar or of unprecedented proportions, is alarm. This often means panic in the marketplace, mass emigration, and increased (and sometimes violent) political protest and anti-government activity. However, in face-to-face communities the situation is liable to be quite different. Here neighborhoods and other localities often experience a “disaster utopia,” the development of a social environment of intense mutual care and assistance. This environment disappears once starvation begins to exact its physical toll and individuals become weaker and more easily fatigued.

2) The question of available energy becomes paramount at this point. People resort to unusual foods. To conserve energy, expenditures other than those immediately related to obtaining food are pared to a minimum.

3) Social atomization results. Essentially, households close themselves off, and any signs of concern or generosity beyond the bounds of family and household disappear. Supplies are hidden. Food preparation and eating takes place in secret.

4) Lawlessness, including physical aggression, continues to increase but tends to be less concerted and sustained.

5) As victims approach exhaustion, the mayhem ceases. Indeed, activity of any sort practically disappears.

6) Eventually comes the disintegration of the household.  Its collapse is foreshadowed as food sharing within becomes increasingly  discriminatory. There is a tendency to see the elderly as a drain on provisions. Tolerance toward younger dependent erodes less quickly, but there comes a point when children too are receiving disproportionately small amounts of available food. The appearance of neglected wandering children is a certain sign that pockets of exhaustion exist within a famine region. The abandonment or sale of children might be attributed to parents’ concern for their own survival or to their hope that some other person or agency will save their off springs’ lives. In either case, an underlying cause is almost certainly the mental fatigue and exasperation that arises from hearing the children’s incessant cries for food.

Famine can leave cultural legacies that persist for many generations. It is not unusual to find customs that appear to reflect food-related anxieties. Eating patterns, for example, sometimes appear anticipatory, almost as if people were anxiously preparing themselves or “practicing” for another bout with starvation. That Cagaba of Northern Columbia, who have been trouble repeatedly by food crises, glorify fasting.

Goodenough Islanders, likewise no strangers to starvation, use magic to depress their appetites.

Anxiety manifested as a mistrust of others is especially rampant in societies familiar with famines. Famine and mistrust are strong predictors of societies’ readiness to engage in war.

Prolonged or repeated famine has the effect of allowing emergency behavior, patterns essential to survival in the midst of a crisis, to become normalized. This apparently occurs because younger members of society grow up knowing no alternatives. Colin Turnbull felt he witnessed a pivotal moment among the Ik of Uganda when memories of food sharing died with the last members of the society who could recall what life was like in the absence of famine.

For those still living, sharing food with anyone beyond the age of three had become unthinkable, even when food was now and again plentiful. William Shack’s work among the Gurage of Ethiopia provides some indication of the depth to which famine-inspired traits can become embedded in a culture. Shack found the Gurage to be astonishingly light eaters, which he interpreted as the product of “rational fears about physical survival.”

At the time of his fieldwork, however, he found nutrition ample. The Gurage nevertheless behaved as though food were scarce. Meals taken during the day amounted to no more than slight handfuls. Eating more was considered vulgar. It was a different story in private. At night in the dim light of their fireplaces, family members showed none of the restraint they displayed during the day. Shack saw this two-faced attitude as fundamentally selfish. One shared food only when observed eating. The key to minimize sharing was to minimize eating in public.
Shack explains this historically. Four centuries of pillage at the hands of various enemies ended in 1889, but by then the Gurage had learned the consequences of indulging one’s appetite in public and appearing conspicuously plump. To reduce the risk of attack and subsequent starvation, the Gurage developed the habit of never eating more than a handful in public and cultivating an emaciated appearance. These practices set the course of cultural development; what at one time was adaptive became no more than arbitrary virtue. Will this fossilized sense of virtue serve the Gurage well should hunger become a problem again in the future?

The Study of Hunger and Famine
It has been argued that famine is avoidable if government has incentive to act in time. Recent history would suggest that political democracy and a free press create the strongest incentive. According to Sen, no democratic country with a free press has ever suffered famine. If office holders must seek reelection and the media are free to report hunger and criticize policies, then leaders must take pre-emptive steps or risk losing office.

While this may be true, it ought not to be imagined that democratic institutions are the answer. Economic programs that all alleviate immediate concerns of an electorate at the expense of long-term prospects for food security may do more harm than good. Granting the desirability of institutions that foster responsive government, there remains the need for arming the public with knowledge that renders politically unacceptable any response that wins a reprieve from hunger by placing others, including future generations, at greater risk. The realization that nutritional impoverishment is largely a cultural problem places anthropology, the science of culture, under an obligation to respond to this need. To date it has lived up to that obligation. Its holistic, historically informed, and comparative outlooks have contributed substantially to broader, more sophisticated understandings of hunger and famine. The challenge for the future is not to develop some ultimate model for prevention. There are no lasting solutions. Rather, hope resides in relentlessly engaging hunger and famine as topics of investigation and, through research, continuously constructing the knowledge people will need to identify and avert threats to food security in the future.

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Preparation levels: Why short, medium & long term planning is required

RainMan(Survival Manual/ Prepper articles/ Preparation levels: Why short, medium & long term planning is required)

A.  The Three Levels of Preparing
12 May 2012, Code Green Prep, David Spero
Pasted from: http://codegreenprep.com/2012/05/the-three-levels-of-preparing/

prep1

[A FEMA map showing county by county counts of Presidential declared disasters for the period 2000-2010.]

It is easy to think of prepping as being one single set of actions, designed to prepare for any and all future challenges as/when/if they occur, and of the differences between types of situations and necessary responses as being on a smooth continuum, from trivial and minor to life changing/threatening and major.
This is only partially true, and masks the very different types of situations and preparations required. There are very different sets of responses to different types of situations – perhaps best to think of prepping like a plane, which you control very differently while taxiing on the ground compared to when flying through the air.

In fact, rather than just two modes of response (like a plane), we suggest it is most helpful to create three different sets of future challenges, and to identify prepping solutions for each of these, because the three different types of preparations are very different from each other. These three levels of preparing, and the three levels of future challenges, are :

Level 1 : Short Term
Short term problems are those which are, obviously enough, of short duration. They are events that clearly have an expected resolution to them via society’s normal mechanisms, and it is just a case of waiting for the issues to be resolved.

An example of a short term problem would be a major storm, flood, or power outage. Such events could inconvenience you for anywhere from an hour or two up to perhaps a week or two. Lesser events can be considered, too – having your car break down on the side of the road late at night, for example.
In such cases your response to such challenges generally does not require evacuating your normal residence – indeed, by definition, any Short Term/Level 1 events are ones which do not require you to leave home.

You may lose power, you may lose other utilities, and you may have transportation challenges, and there may be regional disruptions to normal social support functions. But the functioning of the country as a whole remains unchallenged, and in some form or another, you know that matters will, in the foreseeable future, return to normal. Society is not disrupted, you don’t have lawlessness or looting.

How/what do you prepare for and respond to a Level 1/Short Term disruption? Things like an emergency generator and enough fuel to power it for a couple of weeks. Extra fuel for at least one of your vehicles. Food and water for a couple of weeks. A two-way radio, although there’s a good chance your landline and cell phones will still work, as may also your internet.
You only slightly modify your normal lifestyle, and you are secure in the certainty that life will be back to normal well before you’ve exhausted your emergency supplies.
A person can be well prepared for Level 1 events without needing to outlay more than $10,000, and probably without needing to outlay much more than $1,000.

Level 2 : Medium Term
These are obviously events which are more major than Level 1 events. We define Level 2 events by the need to abandon your normal residence and move somewhere else. Level 2 events disrupt the total fabric of your region, and are more open ended in terms of when and how matters will return to normal. They might be natural – a solar storm wiping out our power grid, for example. They might be economic – a collapse in the global economy – something which we seem to be flirting with at present. They might be the result of military action, or could be any one of many other issues – maybe even something minor which then snowballs and destroys the increasingly fragile and delicate state of today’s modern interdependent society.

Level 2 events may even threaten people’s lives due to interruptions not only to utility services such as water, sewer, power/gas, trash, and communications, but also due to disruptions to the distribution system for food, gasoline, and other essentials – disruptions which appear likely to extend beyond the point at which most non-preppers can cope.
Some lawlessness and looting will develop, as desperate people search for food.
On the other hand, these problems, as severe as they are, have some sort of an eventual happy ending and resolution clearly in sight, such as to see the restoration of normal infrastructure and a return to ‘life as we know it’ (LAWKI) at some reasonable point in the future.

How do you prepare for and respond to a Level 2/Medium Term disruption? You need a secure location where you can shelter from the lawlessness that may envelope cities and other areas of dense population, and where you can create your own little bubble of comfort, safety, and what passes for civilization.
Possibly your retreat will still have essential services connected to it (power most of all), but you’ll be prepared for an eventuality without power.

You’ll live primarily from stored supplies without worrying too much about replenishing them. Sure, you’ll try and reduce your reliance on external sources of most things, but you’ll not feel the need to become 100% self-reliant or to adopt a 100% sustainable independent life. Instead, you’ll happily live off your stockpiles of food, energy sources, and whatever else, because you can see a clear restoration of ‘normalcy’ at some point within a year or so.

You need two way radio communication to supplement any remaining ‘normal’ types of communication, but primarily to communicate among yourselves, and perhaps augmented by a shortwave radio receiver so you can keep updated with news of ‘the rest of the world’ and what is happening to resolve the problems your region has suffered.
You may choose to do this independently by yourself, because you have the supplies and resources you need. Alternatively, and perhaps for optional social reasons rather than for any essential needs, you may choose to band together with other prepared people too.

Level 2 clearly requires a massively greater amount of preparation (and expenditures) than Level 1. If you have only prepared for Level 1 contingencies, you’ll have a problem surviving a Level 2 event, primarily due to not having a retreat location to move to. Cities will quickly become lethal environments, and even if you successfully manage to evacuate the city you live in, so what? Where will you move to? See our article about the modern day imbalance between city and rural life – there’s no way that small country towns can suddenly accept four times more people than they had before as refugees from the cities. If you don’t have somewhere to go to, already prepared, you have in effect nowhere to go to.

Preparing for a Level 2 event will cost you anywhere from $100,000 as an absolute bare-bones minimum up to $1 million or more. These costs will start to encourage you to adopt group/shared solutions. While two people can never live (or prepare) as cheaply as one, they sure can do so for much less than double the cost. There’s not only safety in numbers, but economy too.

If you feel it impractical to consider preparing to Level 2 standards yourself, don’t give up. The reality is that a Level 2 condition is close to essential. Maybe Code Green can help. Ask about becoming a member of our cooperative community and how you can benefit from shared investments in Level 2 and Level 3 preparations.

Level 3 : Long Term
This is the big one. Society has broken down. Something has destroyed much of the infrastructure not just of your region, and not just of the United States, but of most of the entire world. This might be a bio-disaster (a flu pandemic as has several times come very close in the last decade) or a global conflict, or an EMP pulse, or any one of many other events.
You’re not yet reduced to a stone age life-style, but you’ve no idea when you’ll be able to resupply any of the items you’ve stockpiled, and so your focus now is on sustainable ongoing self-contained living.

Whereas in Level 1 events, you happily lived off and even squandered your stored supplies, sure in the knowledge that the event was short term, and in Level 2 events, you were more prudent and glad you had spares for essential items and generous amounts of ‘just in case’ materials, with Level 3 events, you’re not just focused on spares for essential items, but on how to build replacement products from raw materials and how to adjust to a life with massively fewer modern and complex appliances.

You of course have needed to evacuate if you lived in a city, and the lawlessness (or arbitrary capricious unilateral attempts at imposing draconian ‘order’) is pervasive. It is an ‘every man for himself’ sort of situation, and yes, it may also become a ‘kill or be killed’ situation too. Starving people, facing certain death for themselves and their families, will have no choice but to fight for food and shelter, and you in turn will have no choice but to defend that which you have.

You need to change your lifestyle so that you can become self-sustaining and self-sufficient. Sure, you’ll use up your stockpiled supplies as you devolve down to a level of sustainable self-sufficiency, and as you do so, you realize that you might never be able to replace such things. You need to become both energy and food independent, and your energy independence needs to be not just in the form of PV solar cells (because what do you do as they degrade and fail, in a situation where you have no replacements and where you can’t create the underlying pre-requisite technology to manufacture more) but rather in the form of some type of energy source that you can maintain and operate indefinitely.

Food independence can be slightly modified by trading off surpluses of the types of food you can grow with surpluses of food developed by other nearby families and communities.

You need to become part of a community because you don’t have enough resources, by yourself and with whatever handful of friends and family are with you, to have all the talents, skills, and resources necessary to optimize your life. You need to be able to communicate, bi-directionally, not just locally and regionally, but nationally and internationally, so as to understand what has happened to and what is happening to the rest of your country and the world, and to coordinate your activities with those of other pockets of survivors.

If you have already prepared for a Level 2 contingency, you’ll have a ‘parachute’ to cushion your crash-landing down into the post-industrial society that you’ll be entering. The most important thing is you have a place to retreat to, and enough supplies and resources to buy you some time to urgently start adapting to the new future staring you in the face.

It would be better, of course, if you already have some Level 3 planning and preparations in place, but if you’re already at Level 2, you’re way ahead of most other people.

How much does it cost to be prepared for a Level 3 situation? That’s a question with a huge range of possible answers, and it depends on how much of life’s former comforts you want to try and preserve and for how long, how much you want to have in place to devolve down to less complex forms of technology, and how far you can split such costs with fellow preppers.

This is where Code Green Prep can help. Ask about becoming a member of our cooperative community and how you can benefit from shared investments in Level 2 and Level 3 preparations.

Here’s a table showing some of the key differences in these three levels of future event and their implications to us as preppers.

Item Level 1 Level 2 Level 3
Duration Short – maybe up to a week or two Medium – perhaps up to a year Longterm
Likelihood of   Occuring Varies regionally, but between likely and definite every 5 – 10   years Take your best guess. A disruptive solar storm = 12% chance   every 10 years. Other risks = you decide. More likely than you’d wish for. What are the chances of Bird   Flu evolving and a global pandemic wiping out a huge slice of the world’s   population? Might Iran or N Korea detonate an EMP over the US? etc.
Return to Normalcy Assured Very likely Not for a long time, maybe generations
Regional Scope Probably local and limited Extensive, possibly national Definitely national, maybe continental, possibly impacting   much/all the world
External   Assistance Yes, expected Maybe some, but not much and such resource as there is will be   massively over-extended and unable to cope Probably none for extended periods of time
Survivability if   Unprepared Yes with some inconvenience and discomfort Marginal to low Very low
Social Disruption Possibly some limited opportunistic rioting and looting, brought   under control within a week or so Major, probably new forms of small community government and   policing programs will spring up to create pockets of order among much   lawlessness Complete. Organized gangs will dominate
Relocation Can survive in your normal abode Due to breakdown of city services, need to relocate Essential
Food strategy Not a constraint You’ll survive by eating through your stockpiles of food in the   hope by the time you’ve eaten it all, order will be restored Your stockpiles of food will give you time to create your own   ongoing food sources and to become self sufficient
Energy Some candles, flashlights, warm blankets, open fires, and a   generator You’ll reduce your energy needs and rely on a generator and   stockpiled fuel, perhaps using some in-place renewable energy sources too. Stockpiled fuel will be used carefully as you transition to   energy independence and renewable sources
Defense Stay at home. Biggest threat will probably be rude/pushy   neighbors. Hopefully no lethal threats or responses needed. Moderately uncoordinated groups of starving people or   opportunistic raiders, will probably be able to be repelled by presentation   of weapons and maybe occasional skirmishes. They are looking for easy   targets. Organized groups will battle among themselves for regional   supremacy, and will ‘fight to the finish’ to take over the assets and   resources of others. Expect stolen military weapons as well as civilian   rifles/shotguns/pistols to be used.
Transportation Stay at home Necessary to get to your retreat. Little need to travel outside   your retreat boundaries. Necessary to get to your retreat. Occasional travel to trade   with other groups, roads degraded, few mechanized vehicles. Pushbikes and   horse drawn carts become the norm. Travel is dangerous due to risks from   marauders.
Communication Hopefully some normal forms of comms remain operative – radio,   tv, land line, cell phone, internet. Traditional comms largely degraded or disrupted. Short-range   two-way radios to keep in touch with other members of your group. Shortwave   radio receiver for general news. Traditional comms all gone. Long range two-way radio for comms   within your group, and to interact with other groups and to understand the   world situation and what the future may bring.
Group Size Small. You can survive just fine, even if alone. Medium. Your group/community will essentially be the people who   share the retreat with you, providing social interaction, extra skills and   additional manpower for some tasks. Large. You need access to as broad a range of skills as   possible, and in a nearby region due to dangers and difficulties of   traveling.
Cost of Preparing Low – less than $10,000; probably less than $1,000. High – More than $100,000; potentially as much as $1 million   (but possibly shared among a group of people). Maximum : Everything you can afford and more besides. Definitely   requires group participation to make high-cost items affordable.

When Does Each Level Evolve to the Next Level
Determining the type of event you’re facing depends on three things. The event itself, the reactions/responses of other people, and the level of preparedness you already have in place.
If you have a realistic 5 year supply of everything you could possibly need, you’re in a Level 2 situation for any event that promises to be resolved within that five year situation. But if you only have a six month supply, then you’re forced to adopt Level 3 measures even if the event seems likely to be resolved within a year.
And if you’re prepared only for Level 1 events, you’re way short on options for any type of Level 2 or 3 event.

If society ‘gracefully degrades’ without rampant lawlessness, and if support mechanisms remain in place, then what could have become a Level 2 – 3 event may remain as an ‘easy’ Level 2 event. But if society explodes, then even a survivable Level 1 event assumes Level 2 status due to the need to evacuate the city.

At the risk of repeating ourselves, you need to consider how you can improve your preparedness to be able to respond adequately to Level 2 and Level 3 events. There’s no real trick to lasting out Level 1 situations, but even a mild Level 2 event will be life threatening to many people in the affected area. Speak to us about the Code Green Prep cooperative communities, and how it might be possible for you to find strength, safety, security, and financial feasibility as part of a larger group of fellow preppers.

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B.  Why People Will Steal Your Food – And Everything Else – in a Level 2/3 Situation
11 Jul 2012, Code Green Prep, David Spero
Pasted from: http://codegreenprep.com/2012/07/why-people-will-steal-your-food-and-everything-else-in-a-level-23-situation/

prep2London’s 2011 riots yet again demonstrated the ugly streak of evil that lurks close below the surface of modern society.
(Note – it might be helpful to refresh your understanding of what we define as Level 1, 2 and 3 events.)

The main challenge you will have in a Level 2 situation is security. While you probably will have food and energy supplies for a year or two (or three….), most ‘normal’ unprepared people have no energy stockpiles and little food. Within a week, most people will be increasingly forced to ‘forage’ for their food – and we use this word ‘forage’ as a euphemism for more than simple ‘stealing’, because stealing is a familiar and non-violent sounding term.

Interestingly, we see the greatest problems being in the early days of any Level 2/3 scenario. There is probably an evolutionary process that society will shake down through – we discuss this in our article on the security/lawlessness cycle here.

In that article we lightly touch on the concept that people will be forced to choose between starvation and forcibly taking such food and shelter as they can, by any means necessary. Let’s look into this in some more detail both in terms of the types of risks and threats you’ll face, and how you need to prepare for them.

Level 2 Risks : (a) Lawless Gangs
We have regularly seen, both in the US and elsewhere in the world, the propensity of some groups of society to degenerate into violent lawlessness any time society hiccups and normal law enforcement activities pause.
These people violently riot and loot (and attack and murder) for the sheer devilry and ‘fun’ of it, and because they are laboring under some bizarre view of reality that makes them feel entitled to behave that way, and also for the opportunistic chance to enrich themselves by carrying away color televisions and other home electronics from stores they are looting.

How much more aggressive will they be in a Level 2 situation? It seems realistic to accept that normal law enforcement will be massively reduced in a Level 2 situation. Even if all the police and other law enforcement personnel still report for duty, the same as normal, they’ll be overwhelmed by the number of problems suddenly dropping in their lap.

As we saw in, for example, the Los Angeles riots in 1992, normal law enforcement numbers can be completely inadequate for any outbreaks of mass violence, and in a Level 2 situation, not only will there be even greater disorder, there will not be regional and national reserves of manpower to call upon, because every other region will also be struggling to keep ahead of their own problems. The inability of local law enforcement to deal with rioting is the flipside of the coin to do with the police relying on the general consent and acquiescence of the communities they police – when this starts to fail, so too does the policing, whether it be as we say in Los Angeles in 1992, or more recently in London in 2011, or anywhere else.

Add to that the fact that such roving gangs of people won’t only be looting for fun and for personal enrichment, and they won’t just be seeking things such as computers, iPhones, and suchlike. They’ll be as threatened with starvation as anyone else, and they’ll be looting for food and survival, too – just more vigorously and violently then everyone else.

Level 2 Risks : (b) Organized Gangs
A much greater threat is the presence of organized gangs – bikers, drug distribution networks, street gangs, and such like. While there aren’t as many of these people as there will be, initially, of lawless gangs, they are organized, disciplined, and totally amoral.

They are also determined. Whereas lawless groups of people – ad hoc gangs – are opportunistic and will attack easy targets and avoid hard targets, organized gangs will be willing to attack all types of targets – weak targets because they can, and hard targets because they pose potential threats to the organized gang that will otherwise seek to become the new power structure in a region.
Even worse, many of these gangs are vaguely prepping for the future, too. They’re poised, waiting to attack society as soon as it becomes feasible to do so.

Level 2 Risks : (c) Starving People
We don’t need guns if/when a person politely comes up and knocks on our door and asks if we can spare any food. If we are unable to help out, they thank us for our time and leave again.
But do you really think that is what will happen?
Let’s say 50% of the population only has food for three days or less, another 25% for about ten days, another 20% for about twenty days. And let’s say it becomes obvious to everyone that the Level 2 situation will take not days or weeks, but many months to be resolved.

In three days, half the population will be looking at empty pantries. What will they do?

Within another week, 75% of the population will have no food, and there will be a growing realization by everyone, whether they still have food or not, that there is no hope of any arriving any time soon. What will all these people do?
Over the next ten days, they’ll be joined by just about everyone else. In less than three weeks – probably much less – more than 95% of the population will be starving.

Will these people politely knock on your door, and then just shuffle off and die quietly on the street if you refuse to share your own limited supply of food with them? It is possible that a pacifist single person might do this, but what about a man (or woman) with a spouse and children to feed? Will they just passively let their entire family die of starvation, while watching you and a very few others continue to eat almost normally?

Here’s the logic they face :
You can threaten to shoot me with your gun, but if I don’t take your food from you, I’ll definitely die of starvation, so it makes sense for me to risk being shot while doing anything and everything necessary to take your food from you. If I have to choose between you dying, or me and my family dying, you will be the one I prefer to see die.

You need to understand this. If you refuse to feed your best friend in a post Level 2/3 situation, then he, just as much as any stranger, has no choice but to use whatever means necessary to take your food from you, because it is essential tp the survival of himself and his family.

You also need to remember how people are so brilliantly good at justifying any actions to themselves. The same people who laughed at you for stockpiling food will now be demanding it from you as their ‘right’ – ‘You have no right not to share your food with us, you can’t just leave us to die, you selfish so-and-so’. That’s only one small step removed from ‘You are trying to kill us by withholding food from us’ and ‘You’ve more food than you could possibly need yourself, there should be a law against such selfishness’.

After they’ve demonized you in their own mind, and played up their own deserving victim status, they’ll feel totally justified to shoot you in your doorway, and then to clamber over your dead body and to loot your house of all its supplies.

We are deliberately writing this in vivid shock terms, but you need to understand and accept this. If it sounds impossible to you, ask yourself – and answer the question – what will starving people do instead when they see you with plenty of food while they have none?

Some people might find it unlikely that their friendly next door neighbors will turn around and use any and all means up to and including lethal force to take food from them. We agree this is unlikely, but we realistically fear that it is much more likely that your neighbors (and, of course, strangers too) will do this than it is that they’ll just peacefully and calmly resign themselves to die of starvation and lie waiting for death to occur in their own homes.

Implications
No matter where you have your retreat located, sooner or later it will be found by groups of starving marauders and/or opportunistic gangs (see our article on ‘Is it Realistic to Expect Your Retreat Will Not be Found‘). The only three things you don’t know is, 1) how long it will be until you are first confronted by starving/looting marauders, 2) how often such confrontations will occur into the future, and 3) how many people you’ll encounter on each occasion.

The one thing you can be sure of is that these people mean to take your food and other supplies and resources from you, and if they have to do it by force, they won’t even pause to think twice. Indeed, their resentment at you being well prepared is such they’ll feel you ‘deserve to die’ – this is about as warped as illogic can get, but do you want to bet your life that this is not how people will end up thinking?

You will have become the evil ’1%’ that has recently been demonized by the ‘Occupy Wall St’ protesters. We’ve seen, over the last year, people trying to wrap themselves in the righteous mantle of being part of a supposed 99% of the country, using this supposed ‘moral majority’ empowerment to advocate violence and sanctions against the remaining 1% of the country – even though the supposed 99% group are – quite obviously to those of us who truly are mainstream – anything but representative members of the majority. They’re as much a 1% minority group as are the people they claim that their ‘majority status’ empowers them to act against.

We make these points not so much to criticize the Occupy Wall St people (although we definitely don’t support them) but rather to point out how people readily make completely ridiculous claims about themselves so as to give themselves a self-claimed mantle of legitimacy that then empowers them to do whatever lawless and wrong acts they wish.

The same people who are keen to live off government handouts today, and who believe that rich people should be taxed and then taxed some more so that they (the ’99%’) don’t need to do any work themselves, will of course now resent you for doing the very thing they will have laughed at you about before the Level 2 event – preparing prudently and storing food.

They won’t now consider it to have been prudent preparation and storing of your food. They will claim it to be immorally selfish hoarding of food that should belong to the community (and, in particular, to them). Your refusal to give all your food to them means that you are denying them the right to live. So, of course, they’ll feel totally morally empowered to at the very least take all your food from you, and if they have to shoot you in the process, so be it.

Summary
You need to plan your retreat not just from a perspective of weather and suitability for agricultural purposes and everything else. You also need to plan to make it defendable against people keen to rob you by force, even by lethal force if necessary.

The most important adage is ‘safety in numbers’. You need to become part of a community to share the burden of defending your properties, and to have the strength in numbers necessary to prevail against attacks by evildoers

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Infographic: Tips for EMP & the Essential Modern Survival kit

(Survival Manual/ Prepper articles,  Infographic: Tips for EMP & the Essential Modern Survival kit)

A.  Infographic: Tips for EMP
14 June 2012, Modern Survival Online, by Rourke
Pasted from: <http://modernsurvivalonline.com/infographic-tips-for-emp/>

EMP infographic

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B.  Infographic: Modern Survival Kit
4 May 2012, Modern Survival Online, by Rourke
Pasted from: <http://modernsurvivalonline.com/infographic-modern-survival-kit/&gt;

Survival kit Infographic

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Black swans flourish – with a helping hand

(News & Editorial/ Black swans flourish – with a helping hand)

A. The Black Swan
An event or occurrence that deviates beyond what is normally expected of a situation and that would be extremely difficult to predict.
Black swan event: First, it is an outlier, as it lies outside the realm of regular expectations, because nothing in the past can convincingly point to its possibility. Second, it carries an extreme impact. Third, in spite of its outlier status, human nature makes us concoct explanations for its occurrence after the fact, making it explainable and predictable.
The “talking points” listed below were taken from a number of websites.

Examples of several unexpected, world-changing  Black swans:
  1850 Commercial oil drilling starts new Industrial revolution
•  World War I
•  The rise of German dictator Adolph Hitler and subsequent WWII
•  Arab Oil Embargo of 1973…
•  The precipitous demise of the Soviet bloc
•  Personal computers
•  The rise of Islamic fundamentalism
•  The spread of the Internet
•  Stock market crash of 1987
•  9/11
•  2008 Lehman Brothers and the Great Recession
•  Flooding in Thailand
•  China sharply tightened its limits on exports of rare earth minerals, on which the information technology, automotive, and energy industries rely
•  2011 Japanese 9.0 tsunami and Fukushima nuclear plant melt down.

 A few potential Black Swans, awaiting:
•  Black swan events have often emerged in the past out of pockets of perceived market strength.
•  Global Conflict triggered by Food Scarcity
•  Continued and expanding severe drought In The United States
•  European Community crisis, EU dissolving
•  US State And Local Government Debt Crisis erupts
•  The Collapse Of A Major U.S. Bank
•  Explosive inflation
•  Oil price shock, to either the upside or downside
•  Middle east “Arab Spring” events spread
•  Iran…Israel
•  An EMP attack against any region of the US or Europe
•  Slowing Chinese growth pulls Asia into recession
•  A Derivatives Crisis
•  Crisis in Mexico (civil war, major volcanic eruption near Mexico City, economic collapse): hundreds of thousands of refugees swarm the US the border, militarizing America.
•  US ultra-loose monetary policy leads to a catastrophic market correction
•  The fall of the Japanese economy!
•  Solar Megastorm
•  A Major West Coast Earthquake Or Volcanic Eruption (watch the currently approaching events along the Cascadia Subduction Zone between Alaska and Seattle)

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B.  Life and Times of the Thanksgiving Turkey: He Never Saw It Coming
22 Nov 2012, SHTFplan.com, by MacSalvo
Pasted from: http://www.shtfplan.com/emergency-preparedness/life-and-times-of-the-thanksgiving-turkey-he-never-saw-it-coming_11222012

The Black Swan Theory is used by Nassim Nicholas Taleb to explain the existence and occurrence of high-impact, hard-to-predict, and rare events that are beyond the realm of normal expectations. One example often put forth by Taleb is the life and times of the Thanksgiving Turkey.

The turkey spends the majority of its life enjoying daily feedings from a caring farmer. Weeks go by, and it’s the same thing day-in-day-out for the Turkey. Free food. Open range grazing. Good times all around.

The thinking turkey may even surmise that the farmer has a vested interest in keeping the turkey alive. For the turkey, it is a symbiotic relationship. “The farmer feeds me and keeps me happy, and I keep the farmer happy,” says the turkey. “The farmer needs me, otherwise, why would he be taking care of me?”

This goes on for a 1,000 days.

Then, two days before Thanksgiving on Day 1,001, the farmer shows up again.

But this time he doesn’t come bearing food, but rather, he’s wielding an ax.

This is a black swan event — for the turkey.

By definition, it is a high-impact, hard-to-predict, and rare event for the turkey, who not only never saw it coming, but never even contemplated the possibility that it could occur.

For the farmer, on the other hand, this was not a black swan event. The farmer knew all along why he was feeding the turkey, and what the end result would be.

The very nature of black swan events make them almost impossible to predict. The point of this parable is to put forth the idea that sometimes we are the Thanksgiving turkey and understanding this may make it easier to begin to, at the very least, contemplate the possibility of far-from-equilibrium events.

This year, when you enjoy that drumstick or Turkey breast, give thanks to the latest victim of the black swan for being non-contemplative, otherwise, he may have bugged-out long ago and you’d be eating a chicken instead.

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A BLACK SWAN THAT’S BEEN GROWING “BENEATH OUR RADAR”.

C.  Did Paul Harvey’s 1965 Broadcast “If I Were the Devil” Predict America’s Downfall?
22 March 2012, GodfattherPolitics,  by Gary DeMar
http://godfatherpolitics.com/4337/did-paul-harveys-1965-broadcast-if-i-were-the-devil-predict-americas-downfall/

Paul Harvey Aurandt (1918–2009), better known as Paul Harvey, was America’s National Commentator. His listening audience was estimated, at its highest, to be around 24 million people a week. “Paul Harvey News was carried on 1,200 radio stations, 400 Armed Forces Network stations and 300 newspapers. His broadcasts and newspaper columns have been reprinted in the Congressional Record more than those of any other commentator.”

One of Paul Harvey’s most popular messages was the Christian classic “The Man and the Birds” based on a verse from the book of Job: “Ask the birds of the sky, and they will tell you”.

Paul Harvey didn’t just report the news with his distinctive voice; he would always make the point that the news was reflective of society. You could take the pulse of America’s moral health by reading the daily newspaper.

In 1964, Paul Harvey wrote, “If I Were the Devil.” Various versions of the article have appeared over time. I first heard about it from Glenn Beck’s show, but it’s been floating around the internet for some time.

Before Paul Harvey wrote “If I Were the Devil,” the Italian Marxist Antonio Gramsci (1891–1937) explained the steps necessary for radicals to transform a nation without firing a shot:

They must enter into every civil, cultural and political activity in every nation, patiently leavening them all as thoroughly as yeast leavens bread. . . . This would require a ‘long march through the institutions’ — the arts, cinema, theater, schools, colleges, seminaries, newspapers, magazines, and the new electronic medium of the time, radio.”
The following is the text from an audio version of Paul Harvey’s “If I were the Devil.” you can see that Gramsci was on target and his radical heirs were successful:

“If I were the devil, I wouldn’t be happy until I had seized the ripest apple on the tree — Thee. So I’d set about however necessary to take over the United States. I’d subvert the churches first — I would begin with a campaign of whispers. With the wisdom of a serpent, I would whisper to you as I whispered to Eve: ‘Do as you please. Do as you please.’

“To the young, I would whisper, ‘The Bible is a myth.’ I would convince them that man created God instead of the other way around.

I would confide that what is bad is good, and what is good is ‘square.’

And the old, I would teach to pray. I would teach them to pray after me, ‘Our Father, which art in Washington…’

“And then I’d get organized. I’d educate authors on how to make lurid literature exciting, so that anything else would appear dull and uninteresting. I’d threaten TV with dirtier movies and vice versa.

I’d pedal narcotics to whom I could.

I’d sell alcohol to ladies and gentlemen of distinction.

I’d tranquilize the rest with pills.

“If I were the devil I’d soon have families that war with themselves, churches that war with themselves, and nations that war with themselves; until each in its turn was consumed.

And with promises of higher ratings I’d have mesmerizing media fanning the flames.

If I were the devil I would encourage schools to refine young intellects, and neglect to discipline emotions — just let those run wild, until before you knew it, you’d have to have drug sniffing dogs and metal detectors at every schoolhouse door.

“Within a decade I’d have prisons overflowing, I’d have judges promoting pornography — soon I could evict God from the courthouse, and then the schoolhouse, and then from the houses of Congress.

And in His own churches I would substitute psychology for religion, and deify science.

I would lure priests and pastors into misusing boys and girls, and church money.

If I were the devil I’d make the symbols of Easter an egg and the symbol of Christmas a bottle.

“If I were the devil I’d take from those who have, and give to those wanted until I had killed the incentive of the ambitious.

What do you bet I could get whole states to promote gambling as the way to get rich?

I would raise questions against extremes and hard work, and Patriotism, and moral conduct.

I would convince the young that marriage is old-fashioned, that swinging more fun, that what you see on the TV is the way to be.

And thus I could undress you in public, and I could lure you into bed with diseases for which there is no cure.

In other words, if I were to devil I’d keep on doing on what he’s doing.

Click link to hear Paul Harvey’s “If I were the devil”, on YouTube, accompanied by the appropriate related  imagery:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w13Vynj2bWA

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D.  How can we protect ourselves from these black swan event risks?
http://modernsurvivalblog.com/the-economy/black-swan-event-risks-2011/
Minimize your risks on Wall Street
Buy commodities that hold value through inflation (physical Gold, Silver, …)
Buy tangible things that are and will be useful to you in the future
Keep some cash on hand to get you through a short-term disaster
Buy food supplies now
Become more self-reliant, reduce your debt level
Plant a garden
Own physical assets without debt (land, assets of practical value)
Learn practical skills
Check under the Survival Manual tab at the top of 4dtraveler website; the articles listed are  all posted in this site.

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Tuberculosis

(Survival Manual/ 6. Medical/ b) Disease/ Tuberculosis)

Important points to remember from this article:
•  More than two billion people, equal to one-third of the world’s total population, are infected with TB bacilli.
•  TB remains a disease of poverty and poor health services.
• [Should there occur a SHTF/ TEOTWAWKI event drastically lowering global living standards, expect Tuberculosis rates & overall numbers to increase. At present, Tuberculosis is a fringe disease for we who live in the affluent West, that could change. Just remember, if the global economy goes south and stays down for an extended length of time, people with “a cough that just won’t go away” may have contracted Tuberculosis. See “Signs and Symptoms”, below. Mr Larry]


A.  World Tuberculosis Day 2011
19 August 2011, Doctor NDTV, Aman subeditor
Pasted from: <http://doctor.ndtv.com/storypage/ndtv/id/5055/type/feature/World_Tuberculosis_Day_2011.html?cp>

World Tuberculosis (TB) Day, which falls on March 24 every year, aims to raise public awareness about tuberculosis, a preventable disease. Tuberculosis is still an epidemic in many regions of the world, annihilating the lives of many millions of people each year. Each year, over nine million people around the world get infected with TB and almost two million TB related deaths are recorded worldwide. The actual figures must be far larger than this.

For World TB Day 2011, we enter the second year of a two-year campaign – “On the move against tuberculosis”. The campaign aims to inspire innovation in TB research and care. The 2011 World TB Day campaign is focused on individuals around the world who have found new ways to stop TB and can serve as an inspiration to others. The basic idea is to recognise people who have introduced a variety of innovations in a variety of settings. The objectives of TB day are listed below:

  • Research aimed at developing new diagnostics, drugs or vaccines
  • Operational research, aimed at making TB care more effective and efficient
  • New approaches to helping people gain access to TB diagnosis and treatment
  • Novel partnerships between actors in the fight against TB
  • Advances in integrating TB care into health systems
  • New approaches to providing support from members of the community to people affected by TB
  • Innovative ways of raising awareness about TB.

According to World Health Organization (WHO), here are some interesting facts about tuberculosis:
Fact 1 – Tuberculosis is contagious and spreads through air. If not treated, each person with active TB can infect on average 10 to 15 people a year.
Fact 2 – More than two billion people, equal to one third of the world’s total population, are infected with TB bacilli, the microbes that cause TB. One in every 10 of those people will become sick with active TB in his or her lifetime. People living with HIV are at a much higher risk.
Fact 3 – A total of 1.7 million people died from TB in 2009 (including 3, 80,000 people with HIV), equal to about 4,700 deaths a day. TB is a disease of poverty, affecting mostly young adults in their most productive years. The vast majority of TB deaths are in the developing world, with more than half occurring in Asia.
Fact 4 – TB is a leading killer among people living with HIV, who have weakened immune systems.
Fact 5 – There were 9.4 million new TB cases in 2009, of which 80% were in just 22 countries. Per capita, the global TB incidence rate is falling, but the rate of decline is very slow – less than 1%.
Fact 6 – TB is a worldwide pandemic. Among the 15 countries with the highest estimated TB incidence rates, 13 are in Africa, while a third of all new cases are in India and China.
Fact 7 – Multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) is a form of TB that does not respond to the standard treatments using first-line drugs. MDR-TB is present in virtually all countries surveyed by WHO and its partners.
Fact 8 – There were an estimated 4, 40,000 new MDR-TB cases in 2008 [drug resistant] with three countries accounting for over 50% of all cases globally – China, India and the Russian Federation. Extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB) occurs when resistance to second-line drugs develops. It is extremely difficult to treat and cases have been confirmed in more than 58 countries.
Fact 9 – The world is on track to achieve two TB targets set for 2015:
•  Millennium Development Goal, which aims to halt and reverse global incidence (in comparison with 1990); and
•  Stop TB Partnership target of halving deaths from TB (also in comparison with 1990).
Fact 10 – Forty one million TB patients have been successfully treated in DOTS programmes and up to 6 million lives saved since 1995, 5 million more lives could be saved between now and 2015 by fully funding and implementing The Global Plan to Stop TB 2011-2015

The global epidemic of tuberculosis (TB) 
It is estimated that 1.7 million people died of tuberculosis in 2009. There were an estimated 9.4 million new cases of tuberculosis in 2009 of which the majority were in Asia and Africa. It is thought that the rates of new tuberculosis infections and deaths per capita have probably been falling globally for several years now. However, the total number of new tuberculosis cases is still slowly rising due to population growth.

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B.  Control of Tuberculosis (TB)
October 24, 2005- February 11, 2006, About.com, by Jerry Kennard and the MEDICAL Review Board
Pasted from: <http://menshealth.about.com/od/diseases/a/tb.htm&gt;
and <http://menshealth.about.com/od/diseases/a/treatment_tb.htm&gt;

In the 1959s the US and many European countries introduced immunization programs. As a result the incidence of TB fell dramatically. In the late 1980s there was a resurgence of TB cases in the large cities of the US and in Europe. This has been for a number of reasons, among them;

Homelessness; overcrowding in shelters, prisons and in homes for the poor; increased immigration from countries with a high incidence of TB; drug abuse; HIV/AIDS.

Facts About Tuberculosis (TB)
According to the World Health Organization (WHO) each year around eight million people develop TB. Every year about 2 million people die from TB, a curable disease. Every second somewhere in the world someone gets infected with TB bacilli. The World Health Organization estimates that about one-third of the world’s population is currently infected with the TB bacillus.

In the USA the tuberculosis (TB) infection rate in the United States fell to a record low in 2004. A total of 14,511 active TB infections, or 4.9 cases per 100,000 people, were reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Tuberculosis (TB) is a contagious disease caused by the bacillus Mycobacterium tuberculosis. TB spreads through the air. The usual form is pulmonary TB, which affects the lungs. Only people who are sick with TB in their lungs are infectious.
It is important to know that not everyone infected with TB germs develops active TB. About 5-10% of people who are infected with TB bacilli become sick or infectious at some time during their life.

Although TB most commonly affects the lungs, TB germs can also spread to other organs in the body (extra-pulmonary TB). This air borne infection is spread through coughs, sneezes and spitting of infected material. It only takes a few inhaled germs to become infected but In general, you need prolonged exposure to an infected person before becoming infected yourself.
Someone with a compromised or weakened immune system is more likely to become infected with Tuberculosis. TB remains a disease of poverty and poor health services.
TB has been around for many thousands of years. It has been found in bones dating back at least 5,000 years.

Signs and Symptoms of Active Tuberculosis (TB)
Signs and symptoms of active pulmonary TB are usually
  A cough lasting three or more weeks
  Discolored or bloody sputum
  Weight loss
 Fatigue
  Slight fever
  Night sweats
  Chills
  Loss of appetite
  Pain when breathing or coughing (pleurisy)
Tuberculosis can also occur in other parts of your body. These include your joints, bones, bone marrow, muscles, urinary tract, lymphatic system and central nervous system.

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C.  Treatment and Control of Tuberculosis
October 24, 2005, About.com, Jerry Kennard and reviewed by the Medical Review Board
Pasted from: <http://menshealth.about.com/od/diseases/a/treatment_tb.htm

Treatment for Tuberculosis (TB)
Treatment for TB was only available from about 50 years ago. Active tuberculosis, if not treated, will infect on average between 10 and 15 people every year. If active tuberculosis is not treated it can kill and treatment currently reaches only about a quarter of people with Tuberculosis.

Antibiotics are used in the treatment of Tuberculosis (TB). Antibiotic treatment therapy is lengthy and you have to take them for six to 12 months to completely destroy the bacteria. The length of treatment and the type of drug that is needed is determined by your age, overall health, the results of susceptibility tests, and whether you have TB infection or active TB.

It is the length of drug treatment that causes so many difficulties in developing countries as well as in the West. Poor supervision, incomplete treatment, doctors and health workers prescribing the wrong treatment regimens, or an unreliable drug supply not only fails to treat TB but can lead drug-resistant TB.
Surgery is now very rarely used to treat TB.

Drug-resistant Tuberculosis TB Treatment
Strains that are resistant to a single drug have been documented in every country. A particularly dangerous form of drug-resistant TB is multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) Rates of MDR-TB are high in many countries including the former Soviet Union.
People infected with the drug resistant strain will pass on the same drug-resistant strain when they infect others. While drug-resistant TB is generally treatable, it requires extensive chemotherapy, sometimes up to 2 years of treatment. The medication required for drug resistant TB is extremely expensive, often more than 100 times more expensive than treatment of drug-susceptible tuberculosis. Treatment is often more toxic to patients and not so well tolerated.

 

D.    Risk factors
Anyone can get tuberculosis, but certain factors can increase your risk of the disease. These factors include:
_1) Weakened immune system
A healthy immune system can often successfully fight TB bacteria, but your body can’t mount an effective defense if your resistance is low. A number of diseases and medications can weaken your immune system, including:

  • HIV/AIDS
  • Diabetes
  • End-stage kidney disease
  • Cancer treatment, such as chemotherapy
  • Drugs to prevent rejection of transplanted organs
  • Some drugs used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease and psoriasis
  • Malnutrition
  • Advanced age

_2) International connections
TB risk is higher for people who live in or travel to countries that have high rates of tuberculosis, such as:

  • Sub-Saharan Africa
  • India
  • China
  • Mexico
  • The islands of Southeast Asia and Micronesia
  • Parts of the former Soviet Union

_3) Poverty and substance abuse

  • Lack of medical care. If you are on a low or fixed income, live in a remote area, have recently immigrated to the United States or are homeless, you may lack access to the medical care needed to diagnose and treat TB.
  • Substance abuse. Long-term drug or alcohol use weakens your immune system and makes you more vulnerable to tuberculosis.
  • Where you work or live
  • Health care work. Regular contact with people who are ill increases your chances of exposure to TB bacteria. Wearing a mask and frequent hand-washing greatly reduce your risk.
  • Living or working in a residential care facility. People who live or work in prisons, immigration centers or nursing homes are all at risk of tuberculosis. That’s because the risk of the disease is higher anywhere there is overcrowding and poor ventilation.
  • Living in a refugee camp or shelter. Weakened by poor nutrition and ill health and living in crowded, unsanitary conditions, refugees are at especially high risk of tuberculosis infection.

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E.  TB Medical Advisory Board Statement on the Treatment of Active Tuberculosis in Adults
 Pasted from <http://www.in.gov/isdh/19686.htm>
Recommended Treatment Regimens
Unless there are contraindications, patients with active tuberculosis should be treated initially with four drugs: isoniazid (INH), rifampin (RIF), pyrazinamide (PZA), and ethambutol (EMB). Four drugs are recommended because (1) EMB helps to prevent the emergence of RIF-resistant organisms when primary resistance to INH may be present; (2) INH resistance continues to occur in our state, (3) foreign-borne persons from countries with high rates of drug resistance make up a growing number of TB cases in Indiana, and (4) six-month treatment regimens are not possible without the use of PZA.

 Use of Drugs Other Than INH, RIF, PZA, or EMB
There are no substitutes for any of the first-line agents. Before rifampin was available, TB patients had to take medication for 18-24 months. The combination of INH and rifampin allowed completion of therapy within 9 months. Routine addition of PZA during the first two months has shortened duration of therapy to 6 months for most cases. Ethambutol is known as a ‘companion drug,’ and has bacteriostatic activity. Its primary purpose is to suppress the further development of resistance in situations where INH resistance is already present at diagnosis. Ethambutol can be discontinued as soon as the organism is known to be susceptible to both INH and RIF.

The drugs are not interchangeable. Second-line agents must be used when patients cannot take first-line drugs because of resistance or intolerance. These second-line agents are substantially less active, and not without risks of toxicity. Patients taking second-line drugs in lieu of both INH and RIF require treatment durations of up to 2 years with frequent monitoring for side effects.

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F.  Prevention
Pasted from <http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/tuberculosis/DS00372/DSECTION=coping-and-support>
If you test positive for latent TB infection, your doctor may advise you to take medications to reduce your risk of developing active tuberculosis. The only type of tuberculosis that is contagious is the active variety, when it affects the lungs. So if you can prevent your latent tuberculosis from becoming active, you won’t transmit tuberculosis to anyone else.

Protect your family and friends
If you have active TB, keep your germs to yourself. It generally takes a few weeks of treatment with TB medications before you’re not contagious anymore. Follow these tips to help keep your friends and family from getting sick:

  • Stay home. Don’t go to work or school or sleep in a room with other people during the first few weeks of treatment for active tuberculosis.
  • Ventilate the room. Tuberculosis germs spread more easily in small closed spaces where air doesn’t move. If it’s not too cold outdoors, open the windows and use a fan to blow indoor air outside.
  • Cover your mouth. Use a tissue to cover your mouth anytime you laugh, sneeze or cough. Put the dirty tissue in a bag, seal it and throw it away.
  • Wear a mask. Wearing a surgical mask when you’re around other people during the first three weeks of treatment may help lessen the risk of transmission.

Finish your entire course of medication
This is the most important step you can take to protect yourself and others from tuberculosis. When you stop treatment early or skip doses, TB bacteria have a chance to develop mutations that allow them to survive the most potent TB drugs. The resulting drug-resistant strains are much more deadly and difficult to treat.

Vaccinations
In countries where tuberculosis is more common, infants are vaccinated with bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccine because it can prevent severe tuberculosis in children. The BCG vaccine isn’t recommended for general use in the United States because it isn’t very effective in adults and it causes a false-positive result on a TB skin test. Researchers are working on developing a more effective TB vaccine.

Coping and support
Undergoing treatment for tuberculosis is a complicated and lengthy process. But the only way to cure the disease is to stick with your treatment. You may find it helpful to have your medication given by a nurse or other health care professional so that you don’t have to remember to take it on your own. In addition, try to maintain your normal activities and hobbies, and stay connected with family and friends.

Keep in mind that your physical health can affect your mental health. Denial, anger and frustration are normal when you must deal with something difficult and unexpected. At times, you may need more tools to deal with these or other emotions. Professionals, such as therapists or behavioral psychologists, can help you develop positive coping strategies.

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Ampicillin

(Survival Manual/ 6. Medical/ d) Medicine & Supplement/ Ampicillin)
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Disclaimer The information, ideas, and suggestions in the 4dtraveler.net blog are not intended as a substitute for professional advice. Before following any suggestions contained in this post, you should consult your personal physician. Neither the author or Word Press shall be liable or responsible for any loss or damage allegedly arising as a consequence of your use or application of any information or suggestions in this blog.

Ampicillin brand names:Omnipen, Polycillin, Principen

 A.  What is ampicillin?
Pasted from <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ampicillin>
Ampicillin is an antibiotic in the penicillin group of drugs. It fights bacteria in your body.
Ampicillin is used to treat many different types of infections caused by bacteria, such as ear infections,  bladder infections, pneumonia, gonorrhea, and E. coli or salmonella infection.
Ampicillin may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

 Ampicillin has been used extensively to treat bacterial infections since 1961. Until the introduction of ampicillin, penicillin therapies had only been effective against Gram-positive organisms such as staphylococci and streptococci. Ampicillin also demonstrated activity against Gram-negative organisms such as H. influenzae, coliforms and Proteus spp.  Ampicillin is part of the aminopenicillin family and is roughly equivalent to its successor, amoxicillin in terms of spectrum and level of activity. It can sometimes result in reactions that range in severity from a rash (in the case of patients that may unwittingly have mononucleosis) to potentially lethal allergic reactions such as anaphylaxis. However, as with other penicillin drugs, it is relatively non-toxic and adverse effects of a serious nature are encountered only rarely.

Ampicillin is closely related to amoxicillin, another type of penicillin, and both are used to treat urinary tract infections, otitis media, uncomplicated community-acquired pneumonia, Haemophilus influenzae, salmonellosis and Listeria meningitis. It is used with flucloxacillin in the combination antibiotic co-fluampicil for empiric treatment of cellulitis; providing cover against Group A streptococcal infection whilst the flucloxacillin acts against the Staphylococcus aureus bacterium. Of concern is the number of bacteria that become resistant to Ampicillin necessitating combination therapy or use of other antibiotics.
Pasted from <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ampicillin>

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B.  What is the most important information I should know about ampicillin?
Pasted from <http://www.drugs.com/mtm/ampicillin.html>
Do not use this medication if you are allergic to ampicillin or to any other penicillin antibiotic, such as amoxicillin (Amoxil), carbenicillin (Geocillin), dicloxacillin (Dycill, Dynapen), oxacillin (Bactocill), penicillin (Beepen-VK, Ledercillin VK, Pen-V, Pen-Vee K, Pfizerpen, V-Cillin K, Veetids), and others.

Before using ampicillin, tell your doctor if you are allergic to cephalosporins such as Ceclor, Ceftin, Duricef, Keflex, and others, or if you have asthma, kidney disease, a bleeding or blood clotting disorder, mononucleosis (also called “mono”), or a history of any type of allergy.

Ampicillin can make birth control pills less effective, which may result in pregnancy. Before taking ampicillin, tell your doctor if you use birth control pills. Take this medication for the full prescribed length of time. Your symptoms may improve before the infection is completely cleared. Ampicillin will not treat a viral infection such as the common cold or flu. Do not share this medication with another person, even if they have the same symptoms you have.

Antibiotic medicines can cause diarrhea, which may be a sign of a new infection. If you have diarrhea that is watery or bloody, stop taking ampicillin and call your doctor. Do not use anti-diarrhea medicine unless your doctor tells you to.

Preparations
Capsules: 250 and 500 mg. Powder oral suspension: 125 and 250 mg/5mL. Powder for injection: 250 mg, 500 mg, 1g, and 2 g.

Storage
Capsules and powder should be kept at room temperature between 15 C (59 F) and 30 C (86  F). After mixing the powder with water, it can be used for up to seven days if stored at room temperature or 14 days if refrigerated. It must be shaken before each use and should be kept well-sealed.

Prescribed for
Ampicillin is used for treating infections of the middle ear, sinuses, stomach and intestines, bladder, and kidney caused by susceptible bacteria. It also is used for treating uncomplicated gonorrhea, meningitis, endocarditis and other serious infections.

Dosing
The usual oral dose range for most infections is 250 to 500 mg 4 times daily for 7-14 days. When used to treat gonorrhea, a single 3.5 gram dose (seven 500 mg capsules) is administered with probenecid (Benemid). The probenecid slows down the elimination of ampicillin so that ampicillin remains in the body longer. Food in the stomach reduces how much and how quickly ampicillin is absorbed. Therefore, ampicillin should be taken either 1 hour prior to or 2 hours following a meal for maximal absorption; however, for persons who experience nausea or stomach distress after taking ampicillin, it may be taken with meals.

Specific Ampicillin dosing information
•  Usual Adult Dose for Bronchitis: Bacterial exacerbations of chronic bronchitis: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 hours for 5 to 10 days, depending on the nature and severity of the infection.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Endocarditis: Enterococcal: Ampicillin 2 g IV every 4 hours plus gentamicin 1 mg/kg IV every 8 hours for 4 to 6 weeks.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Gastroenteritis: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 hours.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Intraabdominal Infection: 1 to 2 g IV every 4 to 6 hours in combination with other antibiotics, depending on the nature and severity of the infection.  Duration: 10-14 days.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Leptospirosis: Moderate to severe: 0.5 to 1 g intravenously every 6 hours. Mild: 500 to 750 mg orally every 6 hours.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Peritonitis: CAPD-associated peritonitis: 250 to 500 mg orally twice daily and/or 100 to 125 mg/L exchange intraperitoneally, with or without other antibiotics depending on the nature and severity of the infection.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Pneumonia: Beta-lactamase negative, penicillin-susceptible: 1 to 2 g IV every 4 to 6 hours, in combination with other antibiotic(s) depending on the nature and severity of the infection.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Prevention of Perinatal Group B Streptococcal Disease: As an alternative to penicillin G: 2 g IV as a loading dose, followed by 1 g every 4 hours until delivery.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Pyelonephritis: 500 mg to 2 g IV or IM every 4 to 6 hours with or without other antibiotics, depending on the nature and severity of the infection. Duration: 2 to 3 weeks.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Septicemia: 1 to 2 g IV every 3 to 4 hours, in combination with other antibiotics.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Shigellosis: 500 mg orally every 6 hours for 5 days
•  Usual Adult Dose for Skin or Soft Tissue Infection: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 hours or 1 to 2 g IV every 4 to 6 hours, depending on the nature and severity of the infection.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Surgical Prophylaxis: Liver transplant: Ampicillin 1 g plus cefotaxime 1 g IV at induction, then every 6 hours for 48 hours after closure.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Typhoid Fever: Severe, fully susceptible: 25 mg/kg IV or IM every 6 hours for 10 to 14 days. Carrier state: 1.5 g orally or IV with probenecid 500 mg every 6 hours for 6 weeks. Fluoroquinolones or amoxicillin are considered the drugs of choice.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Otitis Media: 500 mg orally or 1 to 2 g IV or IM every 6 hours, depending on the nature and severity of the infection.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Pharyngitis: 500 mg orally or 1 to 2 g IV or IM every 6 hours, depending on the nature and severity of the infection.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Sinusitis: 500 mg orally or 1 to 2 g IV or IM every 6 hours, depending on the nature and severity of the infection.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Upper Respiratory Tract Infection: 500 mg orally or 1 to 2 g IV or IM every 6 hours, depending on the nature and severity of the infection.
•  Usual Adult Dose for Urinary Tract Infection: Mild, uncomplicated: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 hours. Severe, complicated: 500 mg to 2 g IV every 4 to 6 hours with or without other antibiotics, depending on the nature and severity of the infection.
•  Usual Pediatric Dose for Bacterial Endocarditis Prophylaxis: Low to moderate risk: 50 mg/kg IV or IM 30 minutes before procedure.
High risk: 50 mg/kg plus gentamicin 1.5 mg/kg, both intramuscularly or IV 30 minutes before procedure. Follow with ampicillin 25 mg/kg IV or IM, or amoxicillin 25 mg/kg orally, 6 hours after initial dose.
•  Usual Pediatric Dose for Skin or Soft Tissue Infection: IV: 6.25 to 12.5 mg/kg every 6 hours (maximum 12 g/day).  Oral: 6.25 to 12.5 mg/kg every 6 hours (maximum 2 to 3 g/day).
•  Usual Pediatric Dose for Upper Respiratory Tract Infection: IV: 6.25 to 12.5 mg/kg every 6 hours (maximum 12 g/day). Oral: 6.25 to 12.5 mg/kg every 6 hours (maximum 2 to 3 g/day).
•  Usual Pediatric Dose for Surgical Prophylaxis: Liver transplant: Ampicillin 50 mg/kg plus cefotaxime 50 mg/kg at induction and every 6 hours for 48 hours after closure.

What other drugs will affect ampicillin? Tell your doctor about all other medicines you use, especially:
•  allopurinol (Zyloprim);
•  methotrexate (Rheumatrex, Trexall);
•  probenecid (Benemid);
•  a sulfa drug (such as Bactrim or Septra); or
•  a tetracycline antibiotic such as demeclocycline (Declomycin), doxycycline (Adoxa, Doryx, Oracea, Vibramycin), minocycline (Dynacin, Minocin, Solodyn, Vectrin), or tetracycline (Brodspec, Panmycin, Sumycin, Tetracap).

This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with ampicillin. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.
..

C.  What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking ampicillin?
Pasted from <http://www.drugs.com/mtm/ampicillin.html>
Do not use this medication if you are allergic to ampicillin or to any other penicillin antibiotic, such as:
•  amoxicillin (Amoxil, Amoxicot, Biomox, Dispermox, Trimox);
•  carbenicillin (Geocillin);
•  dicloxacillin (Dycill, Dynapen);
•  oxacillin (Bactocill); or
•  penicillin (Beepen-VK, Ledercillin VK, Pen-V, Pen-Vee K, Pfizerpen, V-Cillin K, Veetids, and others).

To make sure you can safely take ampicillin, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs (especially cephalosporins such as Omnicef, Cefzil, Ceftin, Keflex, and others), or if you have:
•  asthma;
•  kidney disease;
•  a bleeding or blood clotting disorder;
•  mononucleosis (also called “mono”);
•  a history of diarrhea caused by taking antibiotics; or
•  a history of any type of allergy.

FDA pregnancy category B. Ampicillin is not expected to harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. Ampicillin can make birth controll pills less effective, which may result in pregnancy. Before taking ampicillin, tell your doctor if you use birth control pills. Ampicillin can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while you are taking ampicillin. 

How should I take ampicillin?
•  Take exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.
•  Take the medicine with a full glass of water. Ampicillin should be taken on an empty stomach, at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after eating a meal.
•  To be sure this medicine is helping your condition, your blood will need to be tested often. Your liver and kidney function may also need to be tested. Visit your doctor regularly.
•  If you are being treated for gonorrhea, your doctor may also have you tested for syphilis, another sexually transmitted disease.
•  Take this medication for the full prescribed length of time. Your symptoms may improve before the infection is completely cleared. Ampicillin will not treat a viral infection such as the common cold or flu. Do not share this medication with another person, even if they have the same symptoms you have.
•  This medication can cause unusual results with certain medical tests. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using ampicillin.
•  Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.

What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
Overdose symptoms may include confusion, behavior changes, a severe skin rash, urinating less than usual, or seizure (black-out or convulsions).

What should I avoid while taking ampicillin?
Antibiotic medicines can cause diarrhea, which may be a sign of a new infection. If you have diarrhea that is watery or bloody, stop taking ampicillin and call your doctor. Do not use anti-diarrhea medicine unless your doctor tells you to.

Ampicillin side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:
•  fever, sore throat, and headache with a severe blistering, peeling, and red skin rash;
•  diarrhea that is watery or bloody;
•  fever, chills, body aches, flu symptoms;
•  easy bruising or bleeding, unusual weakness;
•  urinating less than usual or not at all;
•  agitation, confusion, unusual thoughts or behavior; or
•  seizure (black-out or convulsions).
•  Less serious side effects may include
•  nausea, vomiting, stomach pain;
•  vaginal itching or discharge;
•  headache;
•  swollen, black, or “hairy” tongue; or
•  thrush (white patches or inside your mouth or throat).

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

 .

D. Fish Cillin
AMAZON.COM: Fish Cillin (Ampicillin 250 mg) – 100 Caps, $27.97 free S&H

Product Features
Standard pharmacy quality Ampicillin antibiotic. Labeled for use in fish tanks, in pull apart capsules for easy use – 250 mg. strength

Product Description
Fish Cillin exerts a bactericidal action on gram positive and some gram negative bacteria. Useful for control of some common bacterial diseases of fish including Aeromonas and Pseudomonsa denera and Mysobbacterial group (gill diseases & chondrococcus). Directions: Add contents of one capsule (250 mg) into aquarium for each 10 gallons of water to be treated. While duration of treatment depends on type and severity of infection, it is recommended that extended medication baths continue for a minimum of 5 days and for not more than 10 days. Discontinue treatment if no improvement is noted within 5 days.

Customer reviews:
•  Pharmacy Grade Product, January 11, 2011, By moonjogger (MI)
This review is from: Fish Cillin (Ampicillin 250 mg) – 100 Caps (Misc.)
This is an excellent product. Is all 100% sealed and is Usp grade antibiotic. Manufacturer is West-ward Pharmisuiticals of New Jersery. This very same tablet is what Walgreens and Rite aid are despensing for their Generics. OF COURSE, I was thrilled that my fish would not suffer from any kind of ill effects from any kind of odd fillers or additives that may have been added. Fish are very sensitive to any kind of changes in their enviourment. Thus I am 100 % confident in the Knowing that all are safe with this Antibiotic.
•  SAVED MY DOG’S LIFE., November 1, 2007, By LAVERN A. WOJCIECHOWSKI (Ohio)
This review is from: Fish Cillin (Ampicillin 250 mg) – 100 Caps (Misc.)
I WISH I WOULD HAVE FOUND THESE EARLIER. I lost my Scotty (12 years old and Sheppard 13 years old in 2006). The vet could not save them. It cost a lot of money and no dogs to show for it. When my Scottie’s twin sister got sick in April of 2007 I gave her four tablets a day and on the fourth day she started to eat again. This was the same time that the tainted dog food was happening. I still have her and she was 13 in July and this is November. Plus I saved hundred of dollars in vet bill and have a dog to show for it.

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See also the informative YouTube videos with, “Patriot Nurse”. The following link takes you to her discussion of the, “Top 5 Antibiotics for SHTF”:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DOfthwm_v3E&feature=relmfu

.

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See also the book, “The Doom and Bloom(tm) Survival Medicine Handbook” (Keep your loved ones healthy in every disaster, from wildfires to a complete societal collapse), by Joseph Alton, M.D. and AMY ALTON, A.R.N.P., sold through Amazon.com

.

(See also 4dtraveler article : (Survival Manual/ 6. Medical/ d) Medicine & Supplement/ Antibiotic Uses)

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Tetracycline

(Survival Manual/ 6. Medical/ d) Medicine & Supplement/ Tetracycline)

Disclaimer The information, ideas, and suggestions in the 4dtraveler.net blog are not intended as a substitute for professional advice. Before following any suggestions contained in this post, you should consult your personal physician. Neither the author or Word Press shall be liable or responsible for any loss or damage allegedly arising as a consequence of your use or application of any information or suggestions in this blog.
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http://www.medicinenet.com/tetracycline/article.htm
http://www.drugs.com/tetracycline.html

 Brand names: Sumycin, Ala-Tet, Brodspec, Emtet-500,Ornacycline, Panmycin, Robitet 500, Sumycin, Tetra 500, Tetracap, Tetracon

 DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Tetracycline, is a broad spectrum antibiotic, used to treat bacterial infections, including: Hemophilus influenzae, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Mycoplasma pneumoniae, Chlamydia psittaci, Chlamydia trachomatis, Neisseria gonorrhoeae, and other respiratory tract infections; acne; skin infections, genital and urinary systems; and the infection that causes stomach ulcers (Helicobacter pylori). It also may be used as an alternative to other medications for the treatment of Lyme disease and for the treatment and prevention of anthrax (after inhalational exposure). It is first-line therapy for Rocky Mountain spotted fever (Rickettsia), Q fever (Coxiella), psittacosis and lymphogranuloma venereum (Chlamydia), and to eradicate nasal carriage of meningococci. Tetracycline tablets were used in the plague outbreak in India in 1992. Tetracycline is in a class of medications called tetracycline antibiotics, which work by preventing the growth and spread of bacteria. Antibiotics will not work for colds, flu, or other viral infections. The first drug of the tetracycline family, chlortetracycline, was introduced in 1948.

PREPARATIONS: Capsules: 250 and 500mg; Oral Suspension: 125 mg/5 ml (teaspoon).

STORAGE: Tetracycline should be stored at room temperature (below 86 F).

PRESCRIBED FOR: Tetracycline is used for treating several types of infections caused by susceptible bacteria. Some examples include infections of the respiratory tract, urinary tract, and skin. It also is prescribed for nongonococcal urethritis, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, typhus, chancroid, cholera, brucellosis, anthrax, syphilis, and acne. It is used in combination with other medications to treat Helicobacter pylori, the bacteria associated with ulcers and inflammation of the stomach and duodenum.

DOSING: Tetracycline should be taken on an empty stomach, at least two hours before or after meals or snacks. Do not take tetracycline with food, especially dairy products such as milk, yogurt, cheese, and ice cream. For most infections, tetracycline is taken two to four times daily for 7 to 14 days. The usual adult dose is 1-2 g/day in 2 or 4 divided doses. Drink a full glass of water with each dose of tetracycline. [translated into milligrams, 1000-2000mg/day, 4 each 250 mg or 2 ea 500 mg-lfp]

DRUG INTERACTIONS: Tetracycline should not be taken at the same time as aluminum, magnesium, or calcium-based antacids (Mylanta, Maalox), calcium carbonate (Tums, Rolaids)]; iron supplements; bismuth subsalicylate (Pepto-Bismol), and dairy products. These agents bind tetracycline in the intestine and reduce its absorption into the body.
Tetracycline may enhance the activity of the blood thinner, warfarin (Coumadin), and result in excessive “thinning” of the blood, necessitating a reduction in the dose of warfarin. Phenytoin (Dilantin), carbamazepine (Tegretol), and barbiturates (such as phenobarbital) may enhance the elimination of tetracycline. Tetracycline may reduce the effectiveness of oral contraceptives.

PREGNANCY: Tetracycline antibiotics can impair development of bone in the fetus. Therefore, tetracycline is not recommended during pregnancy unless there is no other appropriate antibiotic.

NURSING MOTHERS: Tetracycline is secreted into breast milk. Since tetracycline can impair the development of bone in infants, nursing mothers should not use tetracycline.

SIDE EFFECTS: Tetracycline is generally well-tolerated. The most common side effects are diarrhea or loose stools, nausea, abdominal pain, rash, and vomiting. Headache and dizziness may also occur. Tetracycline may cause discoloration of teeth if used in patients below 8 years of age. Exaggerated sunburn can occur with tetracycline (photosensitivity). Therefore, sunlight or sunlamp exposure should be minimized during treatment.

 What side effects can this medication cause?
Tetracycline may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
•  upset stomach
•  diarrhea
•  itching of the rectum or vagina
•  sore mouth
•  redness of the skin (sunburn)
•  changes in skin color

Some side effects can be serious. If you experience any of these symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
•  severe headache
•  blurred vision
•  skin rash
•  hives
•  difficulty breathing or swallowing
•  yellowing of the skin or eyes
•  itching
•  dark-colored urine
•  light-colored bowel movements
•  loss of appetite
•  upset stomach
•  vomiting
•  stomach pain
•  extreme tiredness or weakness
•  confusion
•  joint stiffness or swelling
•  unusual bleeding or bruising
•  decreased urination
•  pain or discomfort in the mouth
•  throat sores
•  fever or chills

What special dietary instructions should I follow?
Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, continue your normal diet. 

What should I do if I forget a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.

 Brand names
•  Ala-Tet
•  Brodspec
•  Emtet-500
•  Ornacycline
•  Panmycin
•  Robitet 500
•  Sumycin
•  Tetra 500
•  Tetra brand of tetracycline
•  Tetracap
•  Tetracon

B.  Fish Cycline
AMAZON.COM: Fish Cycline (Tetracycline 250 mg) – 100 Caps, $13.79  + free Shipping
by Thomas Laboratories

Product Features
•  Exerts bacterial action on gram-positive
•  And some gram-negative bacteria
•  For ornamental and acquarium fish only

Product Description
Non-prescription tetracycline labeled for fish or aquarium use for the control of common bacterial infections. Each capsule contains 250 mg tetracycline. Directions: Add contents of capsule to aquarium water at the rate of 1 per 10 gals. Repeat in 24 hours. Continue treatment for 5-10 days.

[Read as: 10 gallons water per 250mg tetracycline * 8.3 pounds water per gallon water =83 pounds of water per 250mg Amoxicillin or 500mg Amoxicillin per 166 lbs body weight.]
BE CAREFUL WITH TETRACYCLINE! Make sure you know the expiration date and mark it down on EVERY bottle you store it in. After it expires Tetracycline becomes toxic.

Customer reviews:
1) It’s Tetracycline, pure and simple, February 16, 2007, By K. Yates “This review is from: Fish Cycline (Tetracycline 250 mg) – 100 Caps (Misc.)
‘Tired of $75 to ??? (Where is the limit?) doctor’s visits to get an antibiotic for an infection? If you are savvy enough to know when you have what, you may want to know that the exact same antibiotic is available to dope your fish tank and retard the growth of unhealthy bacteria. And you won’t go to the pharmacy and pay $50 to $100 for 30 to 50 caplets. This is a bottle of 100 caplets for less than $28 or, at least it was when I reordered from the vet supply house that ships it. (Where I also found 100 – 500mg caps for the same price.)’
2) I haven’t died yet!, June 14, 2009, By lisa simpson ” This review is from: Fish Cycline (Tetracycline 250 mg) – 100 Caps (Misc.)
‘I have used these Thomas Labs antibiotics for years. They are USP grade- United States Pharmaceutical grade. If you really want to pay $85 for an office visit, $30 for a strep screen, then $30 for 30 Amoxicillin capsules, then go for it! But I don’t have that kind of $$$$$!’

See also the informative YouTube videos with, “Patriot Nurse”. The following link takes you to her discussion of the  “Top 5 Antibiotics for SHTF”:

.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DOfthwm_v3E&feature=relmfu

.

.

See also the book, “The Doom and Bloom(tm) Survival Medicine Handbook” (Keep your loved ones healthy in every disaster, from wildfires to a complete societal collapse),  by  Joseph Alton, M.D. and AMY ALTON, A.R.N.P., sold through Amazon.com

.

 

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