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Covid 47: Waving Invisibly


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8 hours ago, The Anti-Targ said:

Interestingly, unless I was misinformed by friends which is possible, I know of someone who came back to NZ (where they live) having tested positive in The Netherlands. If I am correct it would mean that there is an acceptance there will be COVID +ve people on flights (hence everyone must wear a mask), and at least for some countries people will not be stuck overseas to ride out their infection but will be allowed home to home isolate on their return.

And on a related note, the Pacific island country of Nauru (Pop ~1,500) opened its border to non-citizen international arrivals for the first time since the pandemic began earlier this year. Despite a requirement for every traveller to be vaxxed and (supervised) RAT tested within 24hrs prior to departure, the very first flight had a couple of COVID +ve people on it, and for the first time since the pandemic began Nauru has had community spread.

Except for a few countries like Germany there are no mask mandates on planes in Europe anymore.

Lufthansa does not enforce the rules properly anymore to avoid conflicts between crews and passenges which means that even there the rules only exist on paper.

All airlines I flew with this year had rules against flying with COVID symptoms on paper (there are no test requirements anymore) but the number of coughing passengers has been really high for summer/spring travel I felt.

At least in Europe I feel it is a safe bet to assume that there will be positive people on the plane with you I suspect.

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Considering the numbers of positives and sickness from covid that we are experiencing here, side-by-side with the numbers of people who come here every day from everywhere -- it was so packed this weekend, I couldn't even cross the streets and avenues at the intersections, and could hardly get down the sidewalks of lower Broadway -- you KNOW every flight, every subway car, every restaurant, every hospital etc. has covid positives, at the very least, among the passengers and customers and staff.  The safest 'public' gathering spaces at at the university, which being private, can and does continue the masking mandate for staff, faculty and students within the admin offices, classrooms, libraries.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Cool!

https://www.newsroom.co.nz/ideasroom/if-youve-recently-had-covid-look-out-for-shingles

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Shingles can be severe and serious, and also hard to treat, particularly if not identified very early

Opinion: Can having Covid trigger shingles? Yes, probably.

There is growing evidence, both anecdotal and now in several studies, that shingles seems to be occurring at a greater rate in people shortly after Covid-19 infection than might otherwise be expected.

A large recent study in the US looked at people who had not received Covid or shingles vaccines and found that people who had had Covid were 15 percent more likely to develop shingles than the people who hadn’t. People who had been hospitalised for Covid were 20 percent more likely to develop shingles than people who hadn’t been infected with the virus.

 

 

 

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We remain officially classified as at High Risk for covid infection here.  Not that there's any mention of this in the media.

For those who have any interest in what to expect from living in an era where pandemic, climate change and war impact generation after generation*, this book is of tremendous interest -- and easy to read too:

The Fate of Rome: Climate, Disease and the End of an Empire (2017) by Kyle Harper. (There is some discussion of the contents over in the Literature topic, in the "History In Books" thread, around 'page' 13, depending on what sort of device one views this forum.)

His latest, Plagues upon the Earth: Disease and the Course of Human History (2021), is likely just as good -- and uses some of the same material one would guess. Perhaps, partly, because as good as The Fate of Rome is, it got no attention in the media, whereas, of course, -- see the dates of publication -- this later one has.  I have it on order.

* For a single interest, why the complex machinery of regulating the Nile failed in the 6th C after the first waves of Bubonic Plague, leading to wide-spread famine throughout Europe, is because up Nile, entire villages of the people who operated that vast machinery of dams, irrigation etc. had died.  Nothing was going on, so the most fertile downriver farm lands never unflooded, so nothing could be planted.  Yet, somehow, people in this pandemic just don't seem to get why we have 'labor shortages' everywhere -- not just at Wendy's in Nebraska.

 

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Your first brush with coronavirus could affect how a fall booster works
As omicron-specific boosters near, scientists debate how ‘original antigenic sin’ will influence immune responses

https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2022/08/22/coronavirus-immune-response-boosters/

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In the beginning, when the coronavirus was new, the quest for a vaccine was simple. Everyone started out susceptible to the virus. Shots brought spectacular protection.

But the next chapters of life with the virus — and the choice of booster shots for the fall and beyond — will be complicated by the layers of immunity that now ripple through the population, laid down by past infections and vaccinations.

When it comes to viral infections, past is prologue: The version of a virus to which we’re first exposed can dictate how we respond to later variants and, maybe, how well vaccines work.

It’s a phenomenon known by the forbidding name of original antigenic sin, and, in the case of the coronavirus, it prompts a constellation of questions. Are our immune systems stuck still revving up defenses against a version of the virus that has vanished? Will updated booster shots that are designed to thwart variants be much better than the original vaccine? How often will we be reinfected? Is there a better way to broaden immunity?

In the beginning, when the coronavirus was new, the quest for a vaccine was simple. Everyone started out susceptible to the virus. Shots brought spectacular protection.

But the next chapters of life with the virus — and the choice of booster shots for the fall and beyond — will be complicated by the layers of immunity that now ripple through the population, laid down by past infections and vaccinations.

When it comes to viral infections, past is prologue: The version of a virus to which we’re first exposed can dictate how we respond to later variants and, maybe, how well vaccines work.

It’s a phenomenon known by the forbidding name of original antigenic sin, and, in the case of the coronavirus, it prompts a constellation of questions. Are our immune systems stuck still revving up defenses against a version of the virus that has vanished? Will updated booster shots that are designed to thwart variants be much better than the original vaccine? How often will we be reinfected? Is there a better way to broaden immunity?  ....

 

Much more following the quoted content.

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If You’re Suffering After Being Sick With Covid, It’s Not Just in Your Head

Long piece -- much after the quoted content.

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/08/25/opinion/long-covid-pandemic.html

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When the influenza pandemic of 1918-19 ended, misery continued.

Many who survived became enervated and depressed. They developed tremors and nervous complications. Similar waves of illness had followed the 1889 pandemic, with one report noting thousands “in debt and unable to work” and another describing people left “pale, listless and full of fears.”

The scientists Oliver Sacks and Joel Vilensky warned in 2005 that a future pandemic could bring waves of illness in its aftermath, noting “a recurring association, since the time of Hippocrates, between influenza epidemics and encephalitis-like diseases” in their wakes.

Then came the Covid-19 pandemic, the worst viral outbreak in a century, and when sufferers complained of serious symptoms that came after they had recovered from their initial illness, they were often told it was all in their head or unrelated to their earlier infection.

It wasn’t until the end of the first year of the pandemic that Congress provided $1.2 billion for the National Institutes of Health, which led to a long Covid research initiative called Recover, in February 2021. A year and a half later, there are few treatments and lengthy delays to get into the small number of long Covid clinics. Frontline medical workers don’t have the clinical guidelines they need, and some are still dismissive about the condition.

Long Covid sufferers who caught the virus early have entered their third year with the condition. Many told me they have lost not just their health but also their jobs and health insurance. They’re running out of savings, treatment options and hope.

To add to their misery — despite centuries of evidence that viral infections can lead later to terrible debilitating conditions — their travails are often dismissed as fantasy or as unworthy of serious concern.

Making matters worse is the general confusion that surrounds what exactly long Covid is. Current definitions are so broad and imprecise that they impede understanding.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines long Covid as having “a wide range of symptoms that can last more than four weeks or even months after infection.” The World Health Organization sets the line at three months and says symptoms must last “for at least two months and cannot be explained by an alternative diagnosis.” Both highlight fatigue, shortness of breath, cognitive dysfunction, brain fog, pain, digestive symptoms, depression, anxiety, cough, headache and sleep disturbances. ....

.... We lack proper studies under any definition. So, as with the study that led to the C.D.C.’s long Covid estimates in May, researchers cobble together data from electronic health records, often billing codes, which are standardized diagnostic codes for insurers. It’s already recognized that such databases are too imprecise for research purposes and may be biased because they collect information only on people in the medical system. Making the interpretation even thornier is that if billing codes weren’t in patients’ files before they had Covid and they appeared in the files later, the C.D.C. paper classified them as “might be attributable” to Covid, regardless of what they were.

Plus, some of the science has been truly weak. While poring over that C.D.C. paper, I noticed it didn’t control for prior health status and age between those who were infected and the control group; without that, I don’t even know how to interpret the already muddled results. ....

.... However, even with those imperfections, 2.8 percent of those living in Britain in July said they experienced ongoing symptoms they attributed to having had Covid. Encouragingly, those numbers indicated declines over the past few months. However, 2 percent of those living in Britain said those symptoms had affected their day-to-day lives, and 0.6 percent reported that their daily activities had been “limited a lot.”

Just that is a very large number. For the United States, 0.6 percent of the population would mean about two million people potentially facing a debilitating condition, comparable to those expected to be diagnosed with cancer this year. Plus, the prospect of increased medical issues adds another category of concern besides self-reported symptoms. ....

 

 

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My question is, should an individual rotate boosters, or stick with one product?

For instance, my vaccination card shows a string of Pfizer shots.

When I read the article, it makes me think that it would be better for a person to get a wide range of vaccinations from different providers to stimulate a wider range of antibodies.

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1 hour ago, Wilbur said:

My question is, should an individual rotate boosters, or stick with one product

Recall, I know nothing, and have no professional expertise!

I have all Moderna; Partner has all Pfizer.

My guess is that it makes no difference -- the only thing that matters is getting vaccinated and boosted -- and wearing masks.  I am much looking forward to the new ones that are coming next month, I think.

Partner took a party of Travelers to South America this month -- returned this week.  Boss of bosses, Partner's protocols were strict regarding covid safety (as well as others); the location on the Pacific coast meant that all activities were outdoors, or essentially outdoors. Everybody was vaxed, everybody tested before going to the airports. They tested everyday.  The consequence was that no one got covid, with the exception of the fellow who flew home earlier, on a different flight than the other Travelers. He tested before flying: negative.  He tested when he got home: positive.  He is certain he contracted covid on the plane from other passengers.  But as he was vaxxed and boosted to the max possible, his case was very mild, though he's staying in isolation for ten days, to be certain his girlfriend etc. don't pick it up from him.

All the conclusions are that vaccination, no matter what 'brand', keep one from the hospital, and particularly if a younger person, generally a very mild case.

A friend's 92 year old mother contracted covid. She recovered nicely and swiftly, thanks to being vaxed and boosted, and paxlovid -- and good care, of course.  (Paxlovid seems of use pretty much only for those 65 and older.)

 

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My 80+ in-laws both got COVID, they felt pretty shit for the usual 7 days and still have lingering symptoms, but fully vaxxed and on anti-virals, they were as protected as they could have been.

Anti-vaxxers are still making noises and trying to run in local body elections promoting BS like more people have been admitted to ICU because of vaccine reactions than from COVID-19. Former nurses and pharmacologists even. They know they are lying... or are they really that caught by the delusion?

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Moderna Sues Pfizer and BioNTech Over Covid Vaccine
The lawsuit, filed Friday, alleges that the companies’ Covid vaccine violated Moderna’s mRNA patents.

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/08/26/business/moderna-covid-vaccine-lawsuit.html

 

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.... “We are filing these lawsuits to protect the innovative mRNA technology platform that we pioneered, invested billions of dollars in creating, and patented during the decade preceding the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Stéphane Bancel, Moderna’s chief executive. “This foundational platform, which we began building in 2010, along with our patented work on coronaviruses in 2015 and 2016, enabled us to produce a safe and highly effective Covid-19 vaccine in record time after the pandemic struck.”

Moderna, which accepted $2.5 billion in taxpayer money to develop its Covid-19 vaccine, had said in 2020 that it would not enforce its Covid-related patents while the pandemic continues. But in March, the company said it expected that manufacturers that are not based in or producing in low- or middle-income countries would respect the company’s intellectual property.

Moderna on Friday said that it was not seeking damages for activities before March 8 and that it was not seeking to remove Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccines from the market and that it was not asking for an injunction to prevent its future sale, given the need for access to coronavirus vaccines.

 

 

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Certain groups of people should get any booster as soon as it’s available to them, the experts I spoke with emphasized to me: immunocompromised people, people over the age of 50 or so, and people with medical conditions that put them at high risk of severe disease. If you fall in one of these categories and haven’t received all the boosters you’re eligible for, “I wouldn’t wait for the bivalent,” Offit said. For people in these high-risk categories who have already gotten the recommended number of boosters, you should get the new one as soon as it’s available to you. (The FDA and CDC have not yet indicated whether they will recommend a waiting period between your most recent shot and the bivalent booster.) Goel recommended waiting at least a month after your most recent infection or shot, but if you’re very worried about your risk, you don’t need to stretch the delay to three months. Your body might still have extra antibodies floating around, but with no practical way to check at scale, “I’m honestly in favor of recommending boosting as a way to maximize individual benefit,” he said.

 

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I was going to wait for the bivalent vaccine, but some immunologists in our press noted that the current bivalent vaccine is the og Omicron variant, and now that we've even moved on from that the risk/reward favours getting the regular booster now, then getting the bivalent shot later.

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Also just read an article where epidemiologists have talked about isolation periods in relation to calls for isolation to be dropped from 7 days to 5 days. The stats quoted say ~25% of people are still infectious to some degree after 7 days, but that about 65% are still infectious after 5 days.

Personally I would be OK with a 5 day mandatory minimum period of isolation, extended to 7 days mandatory if you still have symptoms, and govt supporting (financially) workplace policies that require people to do daily testing out to 14 days and requiring a negative test before allowing a return to the workplace. My niece tested positive over a week ago and she is still returning positive tests, with her workplace having a policy of daily testing until she is negative before she can go into work. 

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Like gun shooting deaths, deaths and hospitalizations due to covid are now just how things are in the USA.  Not bothering, not a problem, not really.  There are over 40,000 hospitalized in this nation alone for covid most weeks, and around 450 deaths from covid every week.  Not MY problem.  In fact I don't even hear about it.

 

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First coronial inquest into a vaccine side effect death here

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/vaccine-death-inquiry-ministry-defends-advice-on-myocarditis/JPPQ4P74XZ7XQSFEPKXCBDL2FI/

Young man died of myocarditis, which sadly should rarely be fatal if treated early enough, so probably a preventable death even with him having myocarditis. The main question being presented at the moment is whether the pharmacy that delivered the vaccination gave sufficient information about side effects to qualify as informed consent. If the man had been sufficiently informed about myocarditis risk, and the symptoms, perhaps he might have sought medical help sooner. It's not clear he sought medical help at all, since he died at home.

This bit is definitely unfortunate

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the vaccinator who treated Nairn told the inquiry she was aware that myocarditis could be a rare side-effect of the vaccine, but she had been unaware it could be fatal.

And a pharmacy vaccinator, being not necessarily a medical professional would not be expected to know it is potentially fatal unless there is clear communication in the official info that it is.

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With noting  there's a constant debate in medicine as to what level of risk is "worth" informing patients about, and how that risk is discussed.

 

Lawyers want every risk discussed at every visit, in details, face to face.

Which would mean something like a 60 minute consultation, and multiple signatures every time you want to buy 16 paracetamol from a supermarket. In real life, the packet contains a booklet that nobody reads.

So the real world varies. How much extra value does a conversation have over a leaflet? Is it worth mentioning a 1/10 chance of feeling a bit sore? A 1/100 chance of needing a hospital? A 1/1,000,000 chance of death? How do you even clarify if a 1/1,000,000 chance is actual causal rather than correlative? Can you even clarify if a 1/10,000,000 chance is existing rather than background?

How much pure information does a patient even take in during a consultation?

What ratio of "risk of intervention" : "risk of non-intervention" becomes worth the time? Is truly informed medical consent even plausible without sending every patient to complete the first 3 years of a medical degree so that they can understand the physiology, pathology, and statistics?

Edited by Which Tyler
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https://www.theguardian.com/society/2022/sep/01/430000-britons-have-long-covid-two-years-after-infection-says-ons

 

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430,000 Britons have long Covid two years after infection, says ONS

About 1.5m people in UK say Covid after-effects are adversely affecting daily activities

An estimated 430,000 Britons were still suffering from long Covid two years after first contracting the virus, according to data released by the Office for National Statistics.

One in every 32 people in the UK was estimated to have some form of long Covid at the end of July, equivalent to 2 million people. Of those, around 1.5 million said their symptoms were adversely affecting their daily activities, while 384,000 said their ability to undertake daily activities had been “limited a lot”.

Fatigue continues to be the most common symptom reported by individuals with long Covid, with 62% reporting weakness or tiredness. More than a third, 37%, of those surveyed reported shortness of breath as one of their symptoms, while difficulty concentrating (33%) and muscle ache (31%) were the next most cited symptoms.

...

article continues

 

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