A NOVEL METHOD TO COMBAT THE CHOLERA EPIDEMIC AMONG THE ROMANIAN ARMY DURING THE BALKAN WAR - 1913
The history of cholera, a specific infection caused by Vibrio Cholerae, starts in ancient times. The sixth pandemic that began in 1899 and lasted until 1923, started in India and came to Eastern Europe through Russia. The expansion of the epidemic in the Balkans was facilitated both by the 2 Balkan Wars and the First World War. Romania, as a participant in these wars was affected by cholera, which was especially common among the army during the Balkan War. If the original source of the cholera issue is still controversial, both Romanians and Bulgarians accusing each other of being the basis of the outbreaks south of the Danube, it is widely recognized that the extent of the disease was facilitated by the sanitary conditions of food preparation and drinking water sources among both Romanian soldiers and in the civilian population.
Under these conditions, in addition to numerous measures against cholera taken by the Ministry of War, Prof. I. Cantacuzino successfully experiments outbreak vaccination for the first time in the world with a vaccine prepared by himself and his collaborators. The vaccine containing 25 breeds of vibriones was a success in terms of rapid development of a preparation, the application of which was achieved through a quick campaign and proved extremely efficient, imposing the Romanian method as an effective way to combat a disease in full outbreak.
Key words: cholera; vaccine; outbreak; vast Romanian experiment; Ion Cantacuzino