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[#] Mon Apr 20 2020 09:43:34 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar

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Someone said something this weekend in the things-that-make-you-go-hmmmm category:

Are we actually fighting the chinavirus, or are we simply hiding from it?

[#] Mon Apr 20 2020 11:32:20 EDT from LoanShark

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that *is* fighting it. if you can reduce the R0 below 1.0 for long enough, you eventually win.

[#] Mon Apr 20 2020 20:56:32 EDT from Ragnar Danneskjold

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HCQ has been around since 1955 - its effects are well known. My mother has been on it for over a decade for her lupus.

But HCQ is not the entire treatment. You also need zinc, and a z-pack for secondary infections.

[#] Mon Apr 20 2020 23:50:31 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar

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that *is* fighting it. if you can reduce the R0 below 1.0 for long
enough, you eventually win.

You are of course correct. That doesn't seem to be the predominant vibe though. People seem to believe that we're locked down until a cure or a vaccine come into existence. (I blame Bill Gates for that, of course.) The ugly truth is that a lot more people are going to get infected, which should be obvious from the "flatten the curve" messaging, but that part of it doesn't seem to resonate.

Then of course there are the people who are chanting that it will be great if all of the [group of people someone doesn't like because of social, political, or economic reasons] get sick and die. These are the worst people in the world and sufficient reason to shut down Facebook and Twitter.

Best possible outcome is if we find a significantly higher than expected number of people who were exposed to the virus and acquired immunity with mild or no symptoms.
And I'm ok with a little optimism here -- right now it's the only thing holding some people together.

[#] Fri Apr 24 2020 12:01:56 EDT from LoanShark

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FDA issues warning on HCQ

most of the studies on HCQ I've seen so far are either (a) methodologically garbage or (b) show HCQ to be both ineffective and unsafe

[#] Mon Apr 27 2020 13:48:32 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar

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I continue to believe that because of the Bad People who run mass media, most people have tied their opinion of HCQ to their opinion of the President -- correct or otherwise, you and I are both good examples. AG Barr appropriately called the media behavior "a jihad to discredit hydroxychloroquine."

The studies which set out to debunk the efficacy of HCQ fall into one of several categories:
* The drug is given to patients who are already very advanced in the disease and were going to die anyway
* HCQ is administered alone, not with zinc and z-pak. It is believed that HCQ and Zinc work together to create the antiviral effect, and an antibiotic is needed to keep secondary infections at bay.

Meanwhile, Dr. didier Raoult, the French epidemiologist whose work with HCQ is now well known, administered HCQ+Zinc+Zpak to 80 patients and observed improvement in every case but one, and that was a very sick 86 year old with an advanced infection. Since then, he continued the study with a total of 1061 patients, 91.7% of whom had a good outcome. 4.3 had a poor clinical outcome, while 4.4% showed no virological improvement.


So yes, I continue to believe that the anti-HCQ crowd is biased either politically (because Big Orange touted HCQ) or financially (because Big Pharma wants the cure to be expensive and proprietary).

That's how I'm reading the data. If I'm wrong, that's fine too; I'd rather see good medicine than speculation.

[#] Tue Apr 28 2020 09:57:32 EDT from wizard of aahz

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There's a lot of cognitive dissonanace going on from many different directions. No fingers pointing as when I point one finger, there are three pointing back at me.

[#] Tue Apr 28 2020 10:17:21 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar

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I'm not excluding myself either. I am declaring that none of us are capable of seeing science objectively here. Not me, not you, not anyone.

[#] Tue Apr 28 2020 10:33:33 EDT from wizard of aahz

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[#] Tue Apr 28 2020 10:38:02 EDT from wizard of aahz

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Here's another trial started from anecdotal evidence. x7fnu5ioww6yiai-story.html

It's sort of interesting though as the drug did appear high in the list generated by computer algorithms as to what might work well against coronavirus.

Once again anecdotal and who knows? But I'm glad that they're trying it and seeing what may happen.

[#] Tue Apr 28 2020 14:48:24 EDT from wizard of aahz

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Actually - Masks are mandatory to try to stop people from sneezing or coughing and spreading stuff. Even surgical maskes have been proven to not be able to protect healthcare workers from Covid as surgical masks allow some things to get through. I can pull details if you really want them but based on size of particles in heavily infected environments surgical masks aren't enough. So be positive. Follow intelligent guidelines. Wear a mask to protect others. Wash your hands a lot to protect yourself and others. Don't touch your face to protect yourself. Much is common sense. Don't put yourself in situations where it's difficult to follow common sense guidelines. And don't rush out to try anything just because anyone said so. Wait. Be cautious and let's see if we can get some additional people to get on board with good followup and additional support.

[#] Tue Apr 28 2020 19:49:44 EDT from zooer

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You said that you had COVID-19, what were your symptoms?  When did they test you?  More people are being tested now, you seemed to have it early when testing was limited.  What is your recovery status?


[#] Wed Apr 29 2020 14:25:04 EDT from LoanShark

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Hi zooer--

Symptoms started March 5 with a mild, dry cough, "viral dreams" on the edge of sleep, sore throat, and other mostly mild cold/flulike symptoms through March 11.
March 12, I was sitting at lunch, drinking half a beer, and started to get an intuitive sense that something more serious was afoot. This was some sort of systemic bodily stress reaction--maybe my heart rate was a bit elevated, and it's hard to put this into words but I just knew something was wrong. Since my office had just announced they were planning to go work-from-home as of March 13, I went home early that day.

March 15 the shit really hit the fan. I have mild pre-hypertension or stage 1 hypertension; my BP is typically somewhere just above or just below 140/90. But BP was spiking to 170/110 on the night of March 15, and I was also experiencing a lot of mental confusion including the inability to pronounce syllables quite correctly. Other symptoms that night and through the 17th included: slight wheeziness in the lungs, a heavy feeling in the lungs, hollow sounding voice, extreme loss of energy and appetite, drastic changes in cognitive style and emotional stability--despair and anxiety. Elevated heart rate at times; sometimes it would be difficult to get my resting pulse down below 100 (which is considered tachycardia.) A bit of arrythmia that I could notice myself every now and then. I had to meditate as much as possible, focus on shallow breathing to keep my pulse and BP down. It makes getting to sleep very difficult, when your virus-addled thoughts are going in weird directions and you're not sure whether your heart is racing to make up for problems in your lungs, or what's going on...

So March 15 I went to the local urgent care clinic--they checked my oxygen level, listened to my lungs, that sort of thing. Although my BP was high enough to cause headache, eye pain, and possibly contribute to those mental issues, they sent me home with a prescription for albuterol. I also bought a pulse oximeter to track my oxygen levels at home.

Through March 17 I existed in kind of a fog as these symptoms continued. Very low energy level, appetite, all the weird bodily stress reactions and cognitive dysfunction. These couple days were a bit of a scary roller-coaster ride where symptoms would go away and I would feel almost normal and in good spirits, be cracking jokes, but the symptoms would come back later that day

March 18, started to feel pretty good albeit with lingering eye sensitive from all the high blood pressure over the previous few days. March 19 I was doing a bit better still, and felt well enough to drive to the test center in New Rochelle. The results came back positive a few days later. It was not easy to get tested--I had to bend the rules a bit, and drive to New Rochelle without an appointment.

The thing is, mild symptoms lingered for weeks after this. As recently as Apr 12, I had a pretty major blood pressure spike to 165/100; this was the day after some heavy drinking on the 11th, but still, something was clearly wrong. One of the characteristic symptoms with this virus is that it comes out at night, when you're tired, and you start to feel a hint of that sore throat coming back. On the days (like March 15-17) when you're still having intense symptoms, you wake up in the morning with a feeling that the virus has come back a bit overnight and it's in your head and sinuses again. This is frustrating. It makes it difficult to sleep. And it can persist at a mild level for weeks and weeks.

[#] Wed Apr 29 2020 14:28:45 EDT from LoanShark

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Interestingly, I did not have any fever at all. But in other was this thing pushed me pretty close to a breaking point...

[#] Wed Apr 29 2020 14:28:52 EDT from LoanShark

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*in other ways

[#] Wed Apr 29 2020 15:40:19 EDT from LoanShark

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for those who like data, here's the most recent update from IHME that included any discussion of their forecast regarding "when will it be safe for the economy to reopen?"

There's a 50-state image on page 2. Spoiler alert: if these projections are at all accurate, all 4 states (Alaska, Oklahoma, Georgia, and South Carolina) that have eased or eliminated restrictions are acting a bit too soon.

[#] Thu Apr 30 2020 13:04:08 EDT from LoanShark

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I never cease to be amazed that some people think spreading disinformation is OK at a time like this. Those two Kern County doctors for example: they are pushing quack pseudoscience, and the lunatic fringe just laps it up.

There might be a rational argument for early reopening out there somewhere, but it's hard to see it through all the obvious bullshit smokescreens. I almost want to say these people are hurting their own cause, but it's obvious that plenty of people out there have built up a strong immunity to facts, so there's always another sucker for them to convince.

All I can say is that I will remain committed to truth, and calling out the BS (as politely as possible under the circumstances) when I see it.

[#] Fri May 01 2020 05:40:13 EDT from darknetuser

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I think they are calling the lockdown off around here, not because disease is off, but because the country is badly ruined at this point and simply can't keep the lockdown up without people starving.

They are telling everybody that the disease is off and everything is ok, but my friends who are in hospitals and welfare tell me that is bullshit, so...

[#] Fri May 01 2020 09:57:33 EDT from LoanShark

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Right. I'm genuinely worried about the rest of the world. The US is in a pretty good position financially, but it's a lot harder for some countries to do the kind of borrowing that's necessary to keep people fed and housed during a crisis of this magnitude.

A while ago somebody made the point that a sharp global downturn could cost more lives than the coronavirus could ever take on its own. I have a hard time believing that, in the US, but in other countries I'm not so sure.

[#] Fri May 01 2020 12:36:20 EDT from darknetuser

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2020-05-01 09:57 from LoanShark

Right. I'm genuinely worried about the rest of the world. The US is in

a pretty good position financially, but it's a lot harder for some

countries to do the kind of borrowing that's necessary to keep people

fed and housed during a crisis of this magnitude.

A while ago somebody made the point that a sharp global downturn could

cost more lives than the coronavirus could ever take on its own. I have

a hard time believing that, in the US, but in other countries I'm not

so sure.

It is not about money, really. It is about factories that are closed, which results in people not producing things.

I caught some conversation in irc2p about people who were in some country in which government had taken over telecoms and the army walked the streets. Anybody caught outside took a beating. So there is also that.

I think I have already said, but I am much more worried about the decomposition of social order than of the virus itself.

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