Thursday, September 28, 2023

We are ALL the Immunocompromised!

Since Covid affects the immune system, everyone who has ever had it has a significant change of being immunocompromised now! 

Dr. Gary Payinda noticed,

"Some viruses, which used to cause barely a sniffle in healthy adults, were now putting people in hospital. We're now seeing your typical regular healthy middle-aged person presenting to the emergency department with bad cases of RSV, and that's pretty novel for us."  

A paper published in July looked at how Covid causes immune dysfunction, and raised this concern:

"The oncoming burden of Long Covid faced by patients, health-care providers, governments and economies is so large as to be unfathomable, which is possibly why minimal high-level planning is currently allocated to it." 

Long Covid will have massive effects on society in the next few years. It's like climate change in that it's so huge, we can't get our heads around it. But it's not like climate change in that it's so easily preventable if everyone would just wear a well-fitting mask whenever they're inside a public building or in a crowded outside area.

It's Real, and It's Spectacular

Putrino Lab just published a paper showing evidence of biomarkers of Long Covid so we can better diagnosis it with a blood test, and they also posted a great explainer of the science:

"This work is incredibly important as it highlights clear objective differences in the blood of folks with Long Covid when compared to people who did not have Long Covid (some who had never had Covid as well as others who had Covid and fully recovered). These differences came down to three big areas:
1) Hormonal differences: namely extremely low morning cortisol in the Long Covid group (cortisol is a hormone that does a lot of things, but in the morning its job is to wake you up and get your body ready to face the day. Low morning cortisol can affect your ability to do that).
2) Immune differences: namely evidence of T cell exhaustion and increased B cell activation in the Long Covid group (this shows us an immune system that is fighting something off - and has been doing so for a while - persistent virus makes sense in this context). 
3) Co-infection differences: namely evidence of latent viral reactivations in the Long Covd group (if your immune system is weakened, opportunistic viruses will attack).

There were NO differences in pre-existing history of depression or anxiety between the three groups and these objective biomarkers did not co-occur with any mental health sequelae that were measured."

This elicited tons of excitement because it means it's all real

It's outrageous how many complex illnesses with fatigue a primary marker, like ME/CFS, West Nile virus, or Lyme disease, took years to be acknowledged as not depression or laziness!! People who are suffering shouldn't also fight to be believed.

The researchers had issues with how many people didn't realize they were affected by Long Covid. From this CNN report:

"Putrino said they had the most difficult time recruiting people to their control groups. 'We had all of these people saying, 'I had Covid, and I'm fully recovered. Can I be in your study?' Upon further questioning, however, Putrino says they'd tell him things that would suggest they weren't really back to normal. 'They'd say, 'I'm fully recovered. I just don't go to the gym anymore . . . when I exercise, I feel really terrible.' . . . Ultimately, about 50% of participants who were screened to be part of the control group couldn't be included because of continuing symptoms." 

We have minimized this disease to the point that people have no interest in precautions for it, and we too quickly adapt and accept the new normal of no longer being able to walk or think for any useful length of time. The more we insist this is all fine, the more people will succumb. Clearly and unequivocally, that will dramatically affect how well our society can function while we're also in the midst of hitting many tipping points of climate change -- never before have we needed our wits about us to make the best possible decisions, and we're hit by a brain-invasive disease! 

Maybe it's all a grand scheme from some compassionate god to better sedate us as the world burns!  

Can Lawyers and Insurance Brokers Save the Day?

People are lawyering up in many fields, seeking compensation for unsafe working conditions, sometimes successfully.  

Healthcare workers are outraged by the CDC guidance on masks after they suggested that well-fitting N95s work as well as loose surgical masks, which is wild because, where I live, healthcare workers don't wear any kind of mask!! I do a flippin' song and dance whenever I see anyone in any kind of mask! The BMJ published an editorial describing Covid and Long Covid as occupational diseases, particularly for health care workers who have been made to work with inadequate protections. However, both sides are using the legal system: 

"The law also persists in being an ass. Governments refuse legal liability for policy failures that led to deaths in social care and high infection rates among frontline workers. . . . Legal mechanisms are now lifelines in many health related scenarios. . . . In practice, and regrettably, the legal system has become an instrument to control and limit that human right to health. Instead of protecting citizens from the excesses of government and protecting the rights of an already stretched workforce, legal processes are at times manoeuvred to deny individuals' right and freedoms. In the context of health, the failure to recognise Long Covid as an occupational disease is one of the most powerful examples."

Lawyers will making a killing prolonging these fights, so it might end up being insurance companies that put a stop to it all. 

Popular Opinion Sways Policy

Meanwhile, the government and the CDC and WHO keep downplaying the risk. If you hope to get re-elected, they you'd be crazy to tell people to do something they hate, like wearing masks. Too few politicians care about crafting good policy as much as they care about being popular with the masses. And huge publications, like Time, just keep on publishing crap that insists we can avoid the tripledemic this winter with vaccinations. They say to get the Covid, RSV, and flu vaccines in the next month. They don't acknowledge that in many places, like Ontario, only people over 60 can get the RSV vaccine, and in other places the Covid vaccine isn't offered for anyone under 65, and that the new vaccines aren't even available yet in most places. AND they don't mention that, even with vaccinations, you can still get and transmit Covid and get Long Covid. The vaccines mainly reduce the severity of acute symptoms to keep people out of hospitals. Definitely get a vaccine, but don't think you're immune from Covid because of it. There are far too many mutations for immunity with these vaccines.

Nowhere do they mention what does work to prevent Covid, RSV, the flu, colds, and even strep. Say it with me now: Wear a well-fitting mask!!! 

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