Coronavirus – 2019-nCoV
- Dont be silly Lee
January 23, 2020 at 4:55 pm #39964ParticipantThe VFM Addict@thevfmaddict
Nothing substantial to say yet but I have a very bad feeling that this thread will be needed soon.
We are long overdue for a very serious viral pandemic and the way China are acting I think its already far worse than they are saying.
During the Covid-19 Epidemic I will be wearing a mask and goggles while posting so that if I become infected I won't spread it to you.
January 23, 2020 at 5:02 pm #39966
Unfortunately I do not think that the UK would have the political guts to quarantine large areas the way they have in China. Already we have pockets of TB around the large London airports but Government action is investigative post-event rather than proactive, probably due to ethnic sensitivities.
If it comes here then maybe there will be a big run on the clinical face-masks that are so prevalent in Asia. Incidentally these are mainly to reduce infection FROM the wearer!January 23, 2020 at 5:35 pm #39968
You’re right about the face-masks, Ed. If it comes here full NBC suit and respirator it is then…..LOL
The trouble here will always be public panic. The slightest colds or sniffles and GP practices along with A&E Departments will be swamped with nervous multitudes; and that overload may well in reality kill more than the virus ever does in effect constituting a Denial of Service attack on the NHS.
During the Covid-19 Epidemic I will be wearing a mask and goggles while posting so that if I become infected I won't spread it to you.January 23, 2020 at 5:37 pm #39970
The problem for many of us Forumites is that older people are worse affected. Might get some face masks in town tomorrow. I can think of a few around the Close who would improve their looks with one! Might quieten one or two more…
When the Thought Police arrive at your door, think -
I'm out.January 23, 2020 at 5:41 pm #39971
For anyone interested the BBC are running a Live Updates page here.
During the Covid-19 Epidemic I will be wearing a mask and goggles while posting so that if I become infected I won't spread it to you.January 23, 2020 at 6:10 pm #39973
Thanks VFM, good link.
If a totalitarian state like China cannot contain the outbreak, the WHO had better get its act together, and soon. SE Asia teems with human life, the prospects for containment do not seem good.
When the Thought Police arrive at your door, think -
I'm out.January 23, 2020 at 7:53 pm #39977
Add surgical gloves to your day to day wear. Research shows that hand contamination is a major transmission vector for respiratory illnesses.January 23, 2020 at 8:22 pm #39978Participantkeith with the teef@thinktankForumite Points: 2,985
Apparently its sars based and 100nm in diameter.January 24, 2020 at 8:03 am #39982
Lots of theories on this one. Latest one is that the virus is a snake-human crossover.
It is thought that it may be from the Chinese wet-market practice of selling poisonous snakes for human consumption. (Many Chinese folk medicines are based on appearance so snakes are consumed to restore libido). Typically the butcher will grab a snake and just chop its head off before giving it all to the customer. The chopping block just gets a wipe with a dirty rag before moving on to chickens etc.January 24, 2020 at 9:57 am #39985
To complete your post, Ed, “….and nothing compares with the ingenuity of viruses to find a way to thrive in a new biological environment.”
Incubation period is now known to be about two weeks with this one. So checking symptoms of people who have been in risk zones when they return to the UK means diddly squat unless they picked up the virus about two weeks or so before leaving China. The same is true in China. The cat is odds on to have been well and truly out of the bag long before all these city lock downs.
Currently in China death rates are about 26 out of 800 diagnosed. Picking up the infected 774 before they die means nothing. The figure we really need is the survival rate of those diagnosed. Only once we have that will we know how deadly this one really is. As yet it could still potentially be 100% with those other 774 being already on the way out. I’m waiting to hear of someone who was diagnosed and survived. That said early survival rates can be very misleading. Survival rates are initially higher before any serious pandemic truly explodes. In the early days each victim can receive the best possible intensive supportive therapy which can help. But infected numbers during a big pandemic eventually swamp a state’s capacity to provide such intensive care and then folks survive of perish pretty much solely on their own bodily fortitude.
If this does explode one’s best bet if at all possible is absolute personal lock down. Make sure you have all you need to stay at home without going out for the longest possible period and if you must go out avoid crowded places quite literally like the plague.
I’m off today to grab all the ‘long life milk’ and other long life perishables like the part baked bread you can buy. We already have a totally full freezer and tinned supplies to rival a mini supermarket anyway. Just need to max to 28 days my other half’s prescription medications and we can shelter at home for at least a full month if we need to.
You are right, Bob, that the older among us are more vulnerable if infected. But equally if one is retired with no need to go out to work one is far more able to stay home almost constantly for a long period and and thereby reduce the chances of getting infected in the first place.
_______________________________________________________________________________________January 24, 2020 at 10:40 am #39988
I am not sure why every small outbreak has to be given the Armageddon treatment. It is true that most places, China included are slow to snap into containment mode, now they are acting but something has already spread, so aggressive containment might help but may not stop the thing. Perhaps the only impact is to play into the desires of the anti industrialist mobs who seek to shut down ever industry employing more than a few people. Sars was a threat that did kill a number of people, but its impact was largely economic. Shutting down whole areas threatens to have a far greater economic impact and, is likely to be hugely ineffective. Many have already travelled. Some have been caught after the event having evaded controls and circulated their possibly contagion free carcases, (but who knows?). I heard that the wet food markets of China are being fingered as the likely vector and developer of this outbreak, just as markets were in previous outbreaks of viruses. Shutting, perhaps even shuttering them is a desirable step, but at this stage appears akin to the old stable door trick, the horse, or in this case, the virus is long out of the stable and probably mutating to grow ever stronger, perhaps more deadly as it roams.
Clearly end to end hygiene is emerging as a front-runner control objective. Protective measures, avoiding skin contact, monitoring one’s own health closely, (I have already seen an up tick in digital thermometer marketing) and perhaps barrier methods such as gloves. Masks are said to be of marginal benefit and can only be used to trap outbound material. Should people suspected of being infected still circulate freely, mask or no mask? Most masks do not filter closely enough to stop any inbound pathogens and unless the gauze is suitable impregnated to trap and kill viruses when their benefit remains immeasurable small, they are more likely to instil panic than protect anyone.
Bob is right, many of us are possibly in its firing line, though conversely we might be more able to limit direct contact, crowds and public transport, apply hygiene practices and try to ensure we eat and rest well – this may well be the greatest step we can take. Bob’s beach walks in those wide open areas look hugely attractive (when the sun is shining, not the rain falling) and rather ideal at this time.January 24, 2020 at 11:49 am #39990
+ 1 @VFM, animal-human crossovers are frequently the cause of woe. Lucky for us, the deadly Asian form of Hantavirus never got further than Australia, but that one initially came from bat crap on food-stuffs. So always wash your fruit and veg!
However I suspect that the snake origin for coronavirus may be a first for a reptile-human crossover.January 24, 2020 at 12:32 pm #39995
Off topic as usual – I cannot help thinking pop bottle with ceramic, rubber and wire stopper whenever I read or hear ‘Corona’. Post war there were still a very few used Corona bottles around that had the coveted glass marble as a stopper.January 24, 2020 at 1:17 pm #39996
Yes to the Corona reference, I cannot remember ever having that or ‘Tizer the appetiser either‘. Fizzy things were never my bag at any age.
I understand that the animal to human cross over is called zoonosis and is far from rare. It is another one where hygiene is your friend and salvation, at least in the primary phase of the bug evolution and possibly still the salvation after that. Wash hands, utensils and everything else, including hands, blast as much as you can by cooking it and avoid cross contamination at any price. Overseas, Milton or sodium hydrochloride was our friend, yet washing meats such as chicken is no longer encouraged. Bushmeat is a ‘non-reputable‘ market ad smuggling favourite and widely forecast to be one of the next vectors for trouble.January 24, 2020 at 5:29 pm #40004
The proposed snake origin of this disease is not the first example of disease crossing a species barrier from snakes to humans, Ed.
The latest form of Leishmaniasis, from the deep Honduras jungle, was discovered by many infected members of an expedition to carry out archaeological work in a previously unexplored part of the country. By coincidence, yesterday I finished reading a book about the expedition and its discoveries: “The Lost City of The Monkey God” by Douglas Preston. The author himself, and several others who worked at or visited the site, are still suffering from the disease. Reading about it really chills the blood: the treatment is almost as bad as the disease, one person having to stop treatment due to his organs breaking down.
The title sounds very American/Hollywood monster movie, but it comes from the words of a native Honduran. It is a true story and the conditions faced by the various scientists, archaeologists and reporters at the sites, are a big part of the story. I both enjoyed and was horrified by the story but I recommend it.
The parasitical disease itself is ancient. The author tells a story that he found about its history: a sand fly, a very ancient fly still extant today, is found in Amber, dated to around 300 million years ago. When scientists extracted the fly, they found the Leishman parasites and dinosaur blood, in the gut of the fly. So the fly had been feeding on dinosaurs. Extrapolating that with snakes caught in the region, exactly the same parasites were in the snake and also in the blood of infected expedition members who were continually bitten by sand flies.
Every form of life on Earth is descended from the same basic material. Diseases crossing species ‘barriers’ is bound to happen. Just one small successful mutation is all it takes.
When the Thought Police arrive at your door, think -
I'm out.January 24, 2020 at 6:40 pm #40007
Bob, with a travel agent’s write-up like that I wonder if you once worked for, lets say Thomas Cook!
Put another way I think that I have found several reasons not to visit such areas, even more so than I had before. Anyone else for the staycation trend?January 24, 2020 at 7:46 pm #40008
Many tropical diseases and parasites are truly horrific. A colleague of mine was in Zaire for three or four months and was at some time bitten by a fly. Nasty bite but he thought he had contracted malaria so started on the usual ‘whack it’ prophylactic of sulfonamide (not without substantial risk in itself). It did not work, then he started seeing things moving under his skin and swimming in his eyeballs. He was medivaced to France and had six months of treatment that darned near killed him!
Thirty years ago the dosages to kill some tropical parasites was only slightly less than the lethal dose for humans!January 24, 2020 at 9:15 pm #40009
Not a place I would recommend for your next foreign holiday Richard, no. However, what the book taught me about Honduras was interesting in several ways. Hondurans themselves are quite a racial mix of European and native Central American people, but the native stock is closer to the ancient Mayan than anywhere else but Guatemala next door, which has been significantly more “Europeanised”. The archaeological expedition came about after the author and his archaeologist companions heard an old folk tale, flew over the unexplored jungle areas with a Lidar set in the aircraft and deciphered the results. They found three separate sites which eventually turned out to have been cities, covering a vast area each, with inhabitants who were an ancient people, not Mayan or Aztec. Their ruins were different to Mayan in many ways and their language was also different, plus they had writing as hieroglyphics, which the Mayan did not. They completely disappeared within a very short time, not slowly faded away as the Mayan and Aztec cultures did. Scientists now believe that this was due to European diseases. Aztec and Mayan peoples had been exposed to the Spanish earlier and some had survived. The others just moved away from what they saw happening, disappeared into the jungle of Honduras: their cities were isolated because they had everything they needed and were surrounded by huge areas of jungle. This is true even today, Honduras has many impenetrable areas, although the rot of deforestation has set in, as farmers burn out the jungle. One of the last wilderness areas on the planet, untouched for centuries, will soon be gone.
As for diseases and their transmission: Honduras borders Guatemala and Belize, which was once a British dependency and is now fast becoming a tourist hotspot. Google Map of the area: http://tinyurl.com/v23wlot
The two “Reserva Biolgica‘s” and Patuca National Park, are the areas covered by the map. The Honduran government has sequestered these areas to stop deforestation, but only time will tell if that works. One problem is that the military are used to keep out the deforesters, but they have to be rotated as many of them contract Leishmaniasis. This damned book has got me interested in the country and its history and as is my wont, I have to follow that interest. But I do not intend to visit. After all, that’s what t’internet is for, isn’t it?😎😊
When the Thought Police arrive at your door, think -
I'm out.January 25, 2020 at 9:35 am #40014
Bob, Reading your comments reminded me of some things I had read a while back about the area and its history, though the details had become shaded by the shadow of fading memory. There are many, as yet missing pieces of human history, affecting different parts of the world. That is one where the inhospitable nature of the land conspires to keep the understanding suppressed. The sandy lands of Saudi are unexplored as they were inhabited by peoples who were pre-Islamic on Saudi soil and as such not to be brought into the light of modern Saudi view.
I read recently of someone who had visited a location such as the one you wrote about. Her main point was about the flesh eating bug she contracted and her diary of treatment rather than the location or its history. The treatment was overpowering and time-consuming. The result was successful, though perhaps not in terms of the disfigurement that it left. Fortunately she appeared to say, this is confined to a relatively small area of her neck, so she blithely passed it off as a dramatic love bite. Unless her intimate friend made Dracula look like a toothless hamster I guess you could just accept that idea.
Mind you, bugs closer to home come with risks. Ticks carry pathogens that can serious ruin your day and some water courses carry infectious agents that cause serious health risks. Some years ago I was in hospital as I went blue during admission my temperature went from something of the order of 41C to several degrees higher though I was already being treated with Paracetamol. When the nurse took my blood pressure at 45/40 she changed colour and told me to move nothing as she backed slowly away. I hazily saw a range of infection control people who asked what I had been doing, had I consumed contaminated water, not me, that was someone else and so on. Still, the local hospital tried to work out what was wrong – and failed. A few days earlier I had seen a specialist who was treating me for stomach problems, he had taken blood samples and told me when saw the results that he was pleased to see that I had already been admitted as the results were ‘not good’. I was let out 2 weeks later but it was even longer before I found out, from the stomach man, that it was a reoccurrence of glandular fever. Previously it had been very mild and barely affected me and I continued working, not so the second time! I had some major dental surgery a week or two before the admission. It was speculated that the bug had lain dormant for many years and been kicked off by the dental operation. I was later told that glandular fever can repeat a number of times and can be more serious when you are older.January 25, 2020 at 11:50 am #40017Participantkeith with the teef@thinktankForumite Points: 2,985
BTW so corona is a feature of the sun and that is normally @ 1millon degrees and yet the surface of the sun is 6000 degress.
Now there is a go figure. :)January 25, 2020 at 12:26 pm #40018
UK Dog walkers should now make themselves aware of the symptoms of Lyme Disease (from Deer Ticks). I knew someone in the US who had it without knowing about it for months and it played havoc with his body and brain before finally being cured. Had it been identified early on he would not have been as badly affected.
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