I got some reaction to the ivermectin study I summarized. I have said before that I stay away from treatment stuff, largely because the quality of research is poor and it has to be understood in the context of total patterns of care that require some medical expertise. I do understand research methodology, however, so if I see a good randomized clinical trial on a treatment I will pass it on. Ivermectin has become a lightening rod for some bizarre reason and there is ton of complete misinformation floating around out there about it and some other treatments. And you have people who used the epidemic to come out of the woodwork and claim expertise they don’t have–i.e., Dr. Malone, whatever his accomplishments, was no the or even an inventor of mRNA vaccines.
Here is the broader point. My goal is to inform readers to some extent, but more importantly, to help you inform yourselves. That is why I give links to what I summarize and why we explain exactly how we come up with our charts and tables. But you have to have a skeptical attitude, you have to be aware of biases, especially political ones, that may cause you to look selectively at research and data and to take the wrong message from it. There is a whole subset of people out there convinced that vitamin D or zinc, or ivermectin or hydrochloroquinine or a number of other things are magic bullets that will prevent you from getting CV-19 or limit serious disease. They aren’t. Maybe they help some people. But don’t allow yourself to be taken in by these extravagant and unsupported claims. Don’t believe that if something truly had been shown to have benefit, most doctors would not be using it. I don’t care what people do, but I would encourage you to get medical advice before you do anything, and I would encourage you to be cautious about claims floating around on the internet, especially in regard to treatment. And when people start saying something would work if only it was taken earlier, or taken all the time, or taken with this or that other compound, that is a warning sign. I have bad news for everyone: respiratory virus gonna respiratory virus almost no matter what.
But again let me emphasize again: I don’t care what people do, I respect autonomy. Just prefer you be smart about it. And I won’t tell you the research says something I don’t think it does.
More evidence of the superiority of infection-derived adaptive immunity. The study comes from Italy and covers the start of the epidemic until recently. It found an astoundingly low rate of reinfection, which persisted at that level through the Omicron wave. Those who were also vaxed had an even lower rate of infection. (Medrxiv Paper)
This study suggests that it is the underlying characteristics of a patient not viral load that determine outcomes from serious disease. (JID Article)
Higher quality nursing homes, measured on a variety of dimensions, were associated with fewer CV-19 deaths among residents, but more deaths from other causes, as excessive isolation and other tactics to reduce infections took their toll on those with dementia and other issues. In total the “lower” quality facilities actually had fewer deaths. This fits in with my general admonition about the failure to consider the broader consequences of interventions. (JHE Paper)
If it hasn’t been apparent, and I do try to be careful about this when I read stuff related to masks, I hate them, I hate the stupidity of people who think they are being protected by them, I hate most of all forcing them on children. And people keep acting like they can’t possibly cause any harm. They hurt children’s development; they are causing massive pollution, they are literally pathogen collection devices, and oh, look, commonly used ones have dangerously high levels of titanium dioxide, a poison. And this is in Nature, a woke, but somewhat reputable science journal. (Nature Study)
This study involved prospective testing of a cohort of health care workers to determine how frequently asymptomatic CV-19 infections actually occur. In this study, no asymptomatic infections were detected, but the authors note that the prospective nature and constant testing may have made the subjects hyper-attentive to symptoms. (JID Article)
This study compared viral loads between vaxed and unvaxed persons, finding that vaxed persons initially had lower viral loads, but the difference disappears by six months after vax date. Vaxed persons also had lesser symptoms. (JID Article)