SMALLPOX: Symptoms and Treatments


Smallpox is a very contagious disease caused by a virus. The sores tend to leave permanent scars when they heal. This disease is contagious from the time the first symptoms appear until all of the sores have healed completely. In the United States, smallpox is no longer the common dreaded disease it once was. In fact, while smallpox was once one of the world’s most dreaded diseases, it was officially declared eradicated in 1977 by the World Health Organization, thanks to world-wide cooperation and vaccination.

Symptoms of Smallpox

After exposure to smallpox, the symptoms usually appear in about ten or twelve days. These symptoms consists of fever, headache, weakness, vomiting, and constipation. In a few days the sores begin to appear, usually on the face and around the wrists. Later the entire body is involved, with more of the pustules located on the arms, legs, and face, than on the back, chest, or abdomen. The sores gradually heal over a period of four to six weeks, and when the crust comes off a scar very often remains. Smallpox has a fairly high fatality rate, particularly in small infants.

Smallpox Vaccine

Smallpox can be prevented by the smallpox vaccine. If given to a person before exposure to the virus, the vaccine can protect them. Vaccination within 3 days after exposure may prevent or greatly lessen the severity of smallpox in most people. Vaccination 4 to 7 days after exposure likely offers some protection from disease or may decrease the severity of disease. Vaccination will not protect smallpox patients who already have a rash.

Currently, the smallpox vaccine is not available to the general public. However, there is enough smallpox vaccine stockpiled to vaccinate every person in the United States in the event of a smallpox emergency.

For more details about vaccination, see Smallpox Vaccine Basics.

Treatment and Prevention

There is no proven treatment for smallpox disease. Prevention is achieved through vaccination. For purposes of controlling a smallpox outbreak, smallpox vaccine and antivirals can be used. Read more here CDC: Disease facs

Natural Treatments of Smallpox

Because of the highly contagious character of this disease, the patient must be kept in isolation, and all persons and articles that come in contact with the patient need to be disinfected. The isolation needs to be continued until all the sores have healed and the crusts have come off.

The patient must be kept clean and the room darkened. Good ventilation and an even temperature of not over 70°F. are best. During the fever stage, give plenty of lemonade without sugar. When the skin is hot and dry, take equal parts of pleurisy root and ginger; steep a teaspoon in a cup of boiling water for twenty minutes and give a cupful every hour on until there is free perspiration. Equal parts of yarrow and valerian taken in the same way will also produce perspiration. Red sage, made into a tea or taken in the powdered from in capsules, is very good.

If there is severe itching of the skin, bathe with a tea made of burdock root, golden seal root, or yellow duck root. When the pustules are well advanced and begin to rupture, the skin can be kept clean with boric acid compresses. Bathing the pustules with golden seal tea is a help against permanent scarring. Cleansing with hydrogen peroxide is also helpful.

The diet should be very light.Soybean milk, oatmeal water, or bran and barley water are good. Vegetable broth is very nourishing. Fruit juices are excellent.

When there is exposure to smallpox or any danger of contracting it, cleanse your system with high enemas. Take the herbal laxative given in this blog or any good herb laxative; go on a fruit juice diet for a number of days; then take vegetables broth, or vegetable puree (made from leafy vegetables combined with thick potato peelings, with some oatmeal or natural brown rice added; and after cooking strain, and use).

Hot baths taken before contracting smallpox or after contracting it will make the skin active and shorten the course of the disease.

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