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Thread: Disease and pandemics thread (because it's science)

  1. #871
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim View Post
    Based on corporate policy, my trip next week has been cancelled. I will telecommute.
    I telecommuted for several years for TSR/Wizards of the Coast/Hasbro. The biggest drawback (given that everyone will be telecommuting soon thanks to COVID-19) is that loss of personal contact with coworkers and bosses. It made things quite difficult for me, despite some successes. Plus, permanent telecommuters are at times among the first to get laid off, which I doubt is your situation. This virus is messing up everything.

    Can't telecommute in current job, though. Can't get a laptop.
    Do good work. —Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom

  2. #872
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    I'd have given my right arm to get out of personal contact with coworkers and bosses.

    Grant Hutchison

  3. #873
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    Not everywhere is the same. What you should do depends on local and personal circumstances.
    That may well be, but all the more reason for the emphasis right now being on trying to get that kind of information out, instead of downplaying everything. From where I sit, the only information coming from any kind of official source is aimed at avoiding panic and overreaction. That literally seems to be the primary concern, with nothing coming second.

  4. #874
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    I can't comment on how the situation is being handled where you are.
    "The threat remains low" sums up the official response. The less medical training the speaker has, the more likely they are to try to downplay the dangers. Doctors are finding themselves having to contradict politicians, not entirely unlike the original situation in China.

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    From CNN: Recovering from coronavirus illness can take up to "six weeks," WHO official says
    (From CNN's Jacqueline Howard)
    It can take several weeks to fully recover from illness caused by novel coronavirus, Dr. Mike Ryan, executive director of Health Emergencies Programme at the World Health Organization, said during a briefing on Monday. "It takes anything up to six weeks to recover from this disease," Ryan said. "People who suffer very severe illness can take months to recover from the illness." Ryan added that recovery is often measured by the patient no longer exhibiting symptoms and having two consecutive negative tests for the virus at least one day apart, but some countries may measure "recovery" differently.

    ===

    In other reports, I've heard as short as a week or two for minor cases.
    Do good work. —Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom

  6. #876
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    Quote Originally Posted by George View Post
    This guide looks helpful.
    That mostly sounds consistent with what I have heard elsewhere but I am a bit allergic to Dr. Oz because he is known for pushing pseudoscience and there is thus:

    If you are sick, take 80 milligrams of zinc daily, 250 milligrams of vitamin C twice daily, 250 milligrams of beta-glucan daily and take elderberry syrup or lozenges four times a day for five days.
    I don’t think any of that would hurt you, but I would hate to see anyone running around to find zinc or other stuff when it isn’t likely to do much good.

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." — Abraham Lincoln

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  7. #877
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    I'd have given my right arm to get out of personal contact with coworkers and bosses.
    I hear you, but problems in resolving a project will be held against the telecommuter for not staying in closer touch with the supervisors. It is hard to argue against this, too. I was there a few times. The telecommuter misses a lot.
    Do good work. —Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom

  8. #878
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    Quote Originally Posted by Van Rijn View Post
    That mostly sounds consistent with what I have heard elsewhere but I am a bit allergic to Dr. Oz because he is known for pushing pseudoscience and there is thus:
    I just can't take that Carny barker seriously on anything medical.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  9. #879
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger E. Moore View Post
    From CNN: Recovering from coronavirus illness can take up to "six weeks," WHO official says
    (From CNN's Jacqueline Howard)
    It can take several weeks to fully recover from illness caused by novel coronavirus, Dr. Mike Ryan, executive director of Health Emergencies Programme at the World Health Organization, said during a briefing on Monday. "It takes anything up to six weeks to recover from this disease," Ryan said. "People who suffer very severe illness can take months to recover from the illness." Ryan added that recovery is often measured by the patient no longer exhibiting symptoms and having two consecutive negative tests for the virus at least one day apart, but some countries may measure "recovery" differently.

    ===

    In other reports, I've heard as short as a week or two for minor cases.
    That doesn’t sound surprising. I count on at least a week to recover from a cold and at least two weeks for a flu, with some symptoms sometimes lasting longer. About a decade ago, I had an especially bad flu where I would get into intense coughing fits, and went to the doctor after a month. He just said it would fade with time and it took well over two months for the coughing to really fade. On the positive side, I haven’t had a cold or flu for years.

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." — Abraham Lincoln

    I say there is an invisible elf in my backyard. How do you prove that I am wrong?

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  10. #880
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    Just heard on the news: ten people in Sacramento county (where I am) have tested positive (one has recovered), and they are moving from containment to mitigation procedures.

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." — Abraham Lincoln

    I say there is an invisible elf in my backyard. How do you prove that I am wrong?

    The Leif Ericson Cruiser

  11. #881
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    And here are the next batch:

    42 2.1%
    43 2.2%
    44 3.1%
    45 2.6%

    Not much change.

    And the number of cases/deaths outside of China is now 14,768 cases and 267 deaths.

    In report 13, the number of cases in China was 14,411 and the deaths 304. So really in the same ballpark. The fatality rate does seem to be somewhere between 3 and 4 percent, at least for reported cases.
    Things were stable for a while, but now there has been an uptick.

    46 3.0%
    47 3.1%
    48 2.8%
    49 6.2%

    The sudden jump yesterday was mostly from Italy, where there were 132 deaths in the last day.
    As above, so below

  12. #882
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    Quote Originally Posted by parallaxicality View Post
    That epidemics emerge in Africa isn't surprising; high population density
    Population density in Africa is about 2/3 of the global average.
    A: "Things that are equal to the same are equal to each other"
    B: "The two sides of this triangle are things that are equal to the same"
    C: "If A and B are true, Z must be true"
    D: "If A and B and C are true, Z must be true"
    E: "If A and B and C and D are true, Z must be true"

    Therefore, Z: "The two sides of this triangle are equal to each other"

  13. #883
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    Quote Originally Posted by Van Rijn View Post
    That mostly sounds consistent with what I have heard elsewhere but I am a bit allergic to Dr. Oz because he is known for pushing pseudoscience and there is thus:

    Quote Originally Posted by Oz
    If you are sick, take 80 milligrams of zinc daily, 250 milligrams of vitamin C twice daily, 250 milligrams of beta-glucan daily and take elderberry syrup or lozenges four times a day for five days.
    I don’t think any of that would hurt you, but I would hate to see anyone running around to find zinc or other stuff when it isn’t likely to do much good.
    Well, vitamin C is always good for you and zinc is supposed to kill viruses (There are OTC lozenges for this.). And who doesn't like a little elderberry now and again?
    Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by ignorance or stupidity.
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  14. #884
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    From Matador Travel Security
    March 10 2020

    Latest developments:

    The global number of reported infections now stands at 114,544 with 4,026 fatalities.

    In Europe, the country with the largest number of cases is Italy, where the numbers have reached 9,172 cases with 463 fatalities. Effective March 10 2020 by the government has placed the whole of Italy under quarantine following rises in cases in every region. Public transport will remain operational, but movement is severely restricted with the government saying only those with a valid work or family reason that cannot be postponed will be allowed to travel. "Travel must be avoided across the entire peninsula unless it is justified by professional reasons, by cases of need or for health reasons," Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte announced. Anyone who wishes to travel is now required to fill out a standardized form justifying their reasons and submit it to authorities at train stations and airports, as well as at major roads between cities. Those who lie face a jail term of up to three months or a fine of 206 euros (US$225). Shops can remain open, but only if they can guarantee that customers can remain one metre (three feet) apart. Big and mid-sized shopping centres have to close at the weekend. Grocery stores are allowed to remain open at all hours. Leave for health workers is cancelled. Those accompanying patients to emergency units are not allowed to stay with them in the waiting rooms without specific permission. The restrictions will initially run until April 3.

    The total recorded cases in China currently stands at 80,756 with 3,136 fatalities. Based on official figures, the number of new infections and fatalities has slowed significantly this week. Since the end of February Chinese authorities have begun a gradual de-escalation of restrictions to enable resumption of business as usual outside Hubei province, where restrictions are most stringent. Levels of mobility and community restrictions vary across the country, ranging from a cordon sanitaire in some cities to mandatory use of masks in public spaces. Cities including Beijing and Shanghai, as well as Guangdong and Sichuan Provinces still require people who have recently visited countries with “severe outbreaks” (including South Korea, Japan, Iran and Italy) to be quarantined for 14 days in a Chinese facility, greatly restricting or eliminating the passengers ability to leave quarantine during the 14-day observation period.

    Saudi Arabia: On March 9, the Authorities announced additional travel restrictions and controls to those announced over the last weekend, suspending air and sea traffic between the Kingdom and nine countries, namely the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Kuwait, Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, South Korea and Italy. In addition, all foreign nationals who have been in these countries in the past 14 days will be barred from entry into Saudi Arabia. The entry ban applies to all foreign nationals, regardless of their visa type. According to the latest information, there is no option of obtaining a certificate of health exempting the traveler from this. Land crossings remain restricted to commercial trucks only.

    Additional measures remaining in place include the suspension of entry for tourist visa holders from Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, China (including Hong Kong and Macao SARs), India, Indonesia, Iran, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Lebanon, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore, Somalia, South Korea, Syria, Thailand, Uzbekistan, Vietnam and Yemen. Entry is also suspended for any non-residents who have traveled to these countries in the last 14 days unless they can provide an official certificate of health issued a maximum of 20 hours prior to the passenger departing for the country – apart from the nine countries included in the 9 March directive. The Saudi embassy in the relevant country of origin should be consulted for details of the specific laboratory approved for this examination.
    Travelers who have been in China (including Hong Kong and Macao SARs) in the last 14 days will not be able to transit Saudi Arabia. Entry for the Umrah pilgrimage or to visit the Prophet's Mosque in Medina (Medina province) remains suspended. Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) nationals must use their passport to enter or exit Saudi Arabia, rather than their national identity card.

    In Asia, the largest cluster outside China is in South Korea, with 7,513 cases and 54 fatalities. In the Middle East the largest cluster remains in Iran, with 7,161 cases and 237 fatalities.

    In North America, there have so far been 755 recorded cases with 26 fatalities in the United States, 77 cases in Canada with 1 fatality, and 7 in Mexico with 0 fatalities.

    Outside of China, the number of confirmed cases now stands at 33,788 with 890 fatalities in 113 countries and territories:
    ​​​​​​​Europe and CIS: Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Channel Islands (new), Croatia, Cyprus (new), Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Faroe Islands, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, the Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Serbia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, United Kingdom (including Northern Ireland), and Vatican City.
    Middle East: Afghanistan, Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
    Africa and North Africa: Algeria, Burkina Faso (new), Cameroon, Egypt, Morocco, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, Togo and Tunisia.
    Asia Pacific and South Asia: Australia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei (new), Cambodia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Macau, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia (new), Nepal, New Zealand, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.
    Americas and Caribbean: Argentina, Brazil, Canada, ​​​​​​​Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, French Guiana, Martinique, Mexico, Panama (new), Paraguay, Peru, Saint Barthelemy, Saint Martin and the United States.

    Updated figures can be found on Johns Hopkins University's coronavirus tracking map.​​​​​​​
    Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by ignorance or stupidity.
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  15. #885
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    I heard on NPR this morning that Israel is requiring all incoming citizens to self-quarantine for 14 days, and non-citizens will be denied entry unless they have made arrangements to be quarantined.


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    I may have many faults, but being wrong ain't one of them. - Jimmy Hoffa

  16. #886
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger E. Moore View Post
    I hear you, but problems in resolving a project will be held against the telecommuter for not staying in closer touch with the supervisors. It is hard to argue against this, too. I was there a few times. The telecommuter misses a lot.
    You and I operated under very different organizational structures with very different projects, evidently.

    Grant Hutchison
    Last edited by grant hutchison; 2020-Mar-10 at 12:47 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim View Post
    Well, vitamin C is always good for you and zinc is supposed to kill viruses (There are OTC lozenges for this.). And who doesn't like a little elderberry now and again?
    From what I have read, the vitamin c tablets probably won’t hurt, but probably won’t help either (needless to say, there has been no testing with this virus, but there have been long running claims about cold and flu). It is better, I have read, to get vitamin C in your regular diet for general health, and not start only when you get sick.

    There were limited tests of zinc for cold viruses, not this virus, and it might help with them a little, but the tests were too limited to make a solid case for it. A bigger issue are side effects. Some people lost their sense of smell from zinc sprays which I think are no longer available. Here, Oz is recommending an 80 mg dose, but the FDA has recommended adults take no more than 40 mg a day. And you have to be concerned about people that think more is better, since overdose can be risky. Lozenges can have an aftertaste and cause nausea. I tried them once when I had a cold, and threw them in the trash because of a bad lingering taste.

    I haven’t researched the Elderberry, but I don’t trust anything Oz says, since he is known for pushing under and unverified stuff. Mostly I wouldn’t want to see sick people going around wasting money buying probably useless stuff and possibly getting others sick.

    A couple articles:

    https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/...e-201102171498

    https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-...s/faq-20057769

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." — Abraham Lincoln

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim View Post
    Well, vitamin C is always good for you and zinc is supposed to kill viruses (There are OTC lozenges for this.).
    Vitamin C is good for you if you have a Vitamin C deficiency--otherwise you just excrete the excess in your urine. Zinc seems to have some effect on the adhesion and replication of one of the common cold viruses (rhinovirus, not coronavirus), and meta-analysis shows it might carve a day off your common cold symptoms, perhaps at the expense of having different unpleasant symptoms. And unlike Vitamin C, it is possible to develop zinc toxicity if you take too much.

    Grant Hutchison

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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    I just can't take that Carny barker seriously on anything medical.
    Apparently he's a skilled surgeon. That doesn't make him an expert on anything else. A GP would be better.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

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    I read on twitter that the COVID-19 coronavirus has a fatty outer layer, so washing up liquid is good for handwashing. Any truth to that claim?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Apparently he's a skilled surgeon. That doesn't make him an expert on anything else. A GP would be better.
    When it comes to dietary "supplements", talk to a dietician. And be prepared for bad language.
    The dietary "supplement" industry operates without the evidence base required for drugs. But it's fairly easy to know when someone is misleading you about dietary "supplements".
    If they claim that extra substance X will prevent you getting disease Y (unless disease Y is a specific deficiency disease, like scurvy, for instance), they're misleading you.
    If they claim that extra substance X will "strengthen your immune system" they're misleading you.

    Grant Hutchison

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    Quote Originally Posted by headrush View Post
    I read on twitter that the COVID-19 coronavirus has a fatty outer layer, so washing up liquid is good for handwashing. Any truth to that claim?
    Yes, free coronavirus has a lipid envelope it acquires from the host cell, albeit with stonking great spike proteins protruding from it. I don't know how "visible" that lipid actually is to solvents. But if we assume it is visible, then soap will pick it up just as well as a synthetic detergent. Washing up liquid has various other things mixed in, like surfactants, that make it good at breaking up greasy layers, but that's not really an issue with loose viruses on damp skin.
    I don't know for sure, but there doesn't seem to be much logic in choosing washing-up liquid over hand soap just on the basis of the lipid envelope.

    Grant HUtchison

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    Quote Originally Posted by 21st Century Schizoid Man View Post
    Population density in Africa is about 2/3 of the global average.
    But it has some overcrowded cities just as most populated places do. What Africa does have, is populations moving into new areas of wilderness, then mixing with the general population. So they are on the cusp of any new interactions.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  24. #894
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    Yes, free coronavirus has a lipid envelope it acquires from the host cell, albeit with stonking great spike proteins protruding from it. I don't know how "visible" that lipid actually is to solvents. But if we assume it is visible, then soap will pick it up just as well as a synthetic detergent. Washing up liquid has various other things mixed in, like surfactants, that make it good at breaking up greasy layers, but that's not really an issue with loose viruses on damp skin.
    I don't know for sure, but there doesn't seem to be much logic in choosing washing-up liquid over hand soap just on the basis of the lipid envelope.

    Grant HUtchison
    Thanks, it's good to know that not everything on twitter is fake news.
    I'm not sure what discipline the doctor who posted the information follows, may be a GP.

    https://twitter.com/DrAdrianHeald/st...818035713?s=19

    I think his intention was to prevent panic over the lack of hand sanitiser in the shops, not to promote any miracle properties of washing up liquid.

  25. #895
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    I’ll bite. What is “washing up liquid” in American English?


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    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    I’ll bite. What is “washing up liquid” in American English?


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    Dish washing liquid perhaps? Used when washing dishes by hand.

  27. #897
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    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    I’ll bite. What is “washing up liquid” in American English?
    Dishwashing liquid, dish soap, dish detergent.

    Grant Hutchison

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    Thanks. I figured it was probably either that or the shower gel stuff.


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    Quote Originally Posted by headrush View Post
    Thanks, it's good to know that not everything on twitter is fake news.
    I'm not sure what discipline the doctor who posted the information follows, may be a GP.

    https://twitter.com/DrAdrianHeald/st...818035713?s=19

    I think his intention was to prevent panic over the lack of hand sanitiser in the shops, not to promote any miracle properties of washing up liquid.
    Yes, and he's quite clear that ordinary bar soap or liquid soap is just as good as washing-up liquid. And all of the above are as good as alcohol hand sanitizers. You just need to wash your hands properly. Take a look at the WHO handwashing poster (actually, consider downloading a copy for reference) and take your time.

    Grant Hutchison

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