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  1. #22526
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    Quote Originally Posted by Danno View Post
    His question was specifically about whether they were tracking positive PCR tests, not whether people were still getting PCR tests. I wasn't an anomaly, because by definition the question was about positive PCR tests.
    You are still an anomaly. :P

  2. #22527
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    dear dr tgr:

    GF spent wednesday evening dining with a friend. friend felt a tickle yesterday, tested positive today. we just got over two weeks of being ridiculously sick (but not covid).

    are we about to take another ride on the vid or no?
    j'ai des grands instants de lucididididididididi

  3. #22528
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    Might as well ask the Magic 8Ball for the answer to that. Good luck.
    Seeker of Truth. Dispenser of Wisdom. Protector of the Weak. Avenger of Evil.

  4. #22529
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cisco Kid View Post
    Might as well ask the Magic 8Ball for the answer to that. Good luck.
    Magic 8 ball costs money. TGR is free.

  5. #22530
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    Stepped out to do some grocery shopping today at lunch (because I'm going skiing half of the weekend). Anyway, I'm on a bit of a line that's not moving very fast. Notice the guy directly ahead of me has nothing but some cold and flu medicine.. hacking and coughing, blowing his nose..looks like he feels terrible.. NO MASK. I pulled my mask out and put it on. It will be a long time before I stop having one handy for these types of situations. But, that's the first time I've actually put one on in a couple weeks now...
    Go that way really REALLY fast. If something gets in your way, TURN!

  6. #22531
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    To Vaccinate or Not---The Rat Flu Odyssey Continues

    iíve been wearing my mask for the last month+. when i think about it, the household has been sick more or less since september despite our best efforts. if this is the new normal i am ready to live off the land somewhere. not like i am going out anyway. gotta be from the mail or 5g or something.
    j'ai des grands instants de lucididididididididi

  7. #22532
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    Quote Originally Posted by old goat View Post
    Magic 8 ball costs money. TGR is free.
    We get 8 balls?

  8. #22533
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    Quote Originally Posted by ex-powderbroker View Post
    i’ve been wearing my mask for the last month+. when i think about it, the household has been sick more or less since september despite our best efforts. if this is the new normal i am ready to live off the land somewhere. not like i am going out anyway. gotta be from the mail or 5g or something.
    Send your kids to boarding school. Problem solved.

  9. #22534
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    There is stuff going around and we got something 2 weeks ago. Worst cough I can remember having (not covid). It felt like someone had beat my torso with a inch & a half wooden dowel from coughing so hard. If you feel a really bad sore throat coming on, go get the strongest cough syrup you can get. Oddly my THC sleepy drops also really helped mellow the cough out.
    Quote Originally Posted by leroy jenkins View Post
    I think you'd have an easier time understanding people if you remembered that 80% of them are fucking morons.
    That is why I like dogs, more than most people.

  10. #22535
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    I've been battling sinus crud the past week or so. Negative 'vid, no cough, no flu-pains (got flu shot months ago, too). Went to pick up some Mucinex and was shocked at how expensive it's gotten. $36 bucks for 28 1000mg tablets, $50-60 bucks for 100 of the 500mg tablets. Shit!

  11. #22536
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    Yeah, apparently Mucinex is really hot on the black market so they lock it all up at CVS ......
    Or they just want you to buy their in-house generic, which annoys me, so I make them come and open they cabinet at least 2-3 times for every purchase.

  12. #22537
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    Quote Originally Posted by ex-powderbroker View Post
    i’ve been wearing my mask for the last month+. when i think about it, the household has been sick more or less since september despite our best efforts. if this is the new normal i am ready to live off the land somewhere. not like i am going out anyway. gotta be from the mail or 5g or something.
    Might be time to ask how good are your best efforts.

    Seems like there's plenty of people who think it's fine to wear a mask except when eating with others indoors. This is about as effective as wearing a raincoat except when walking outdoors when rain is forecast.

    No easy answer though. I don't think enough people will wear their raincoats to dinner and skip the eating. And many small groups won't manage it either, though I know a few who have.

  13. #22538
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    why does the overprescription of antibiotics result in "super bugs", but the mass innoculation for viruses seemingly does not creat super viruses? Obviously bacteria vs Virus, but to this layman (who doesnt understand the important differences in this context) it seems like viruses have an amazing ability to adapt to survive, so i would think mass vaccinations would create "super viruses" too? have we just been lucky? Or are there biological reasons this isnt much of a concern?


    If it is found that covid vaccinations are creating vaccine-dodging variants, should we start considering rationing of vaccines for ONLY the sick/elderly?

  14. #22539
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    Can't grasp the technical details.. but flu vaccines seem to reduce the impact of flu and don't result in super variants of flu...
    Go that way really REALLY fast. If something gets in your way, TURN!

  15. #22540
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    Quote Originally Posted by SumJongGuy View Post
    Can't grasp the technical details.. but flu vaccines seem to reduce the impact of flu and don't result in super variants of flu...
    right. So why do antibiotics result in super bugs? Are antibiotics fundamentally much more difficult to tweak than vaccines to get them to work again? Is it possible for overprescription of vaccines to create supervirus mutations? Is that/ should that be a concern?

  16. #22541
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    Quote Originally Posted by californiagrown View Post
    right. So why do antibiotics result in super bugs? Are antibiotics fundamentally much more difficult to tweak than vaccines to get them to work again? Is it possible for overprescription of vaccines to create supervirus mutations? Is that/ should that be a concern?
    I believe 'super bug' = antibiotic resistant bacteria which is bad because there are only limited numbers of antibiotics available.

    Yes, antibiotics have limits and challenges in producing a new one - slow work: eg: kills bacteria but not toxic to host. closely related to animals and all that. Refresher: vaccines are priming your immune response - your immune system does the voros killing, antibiotics kill bacteria (directly) by interrupting something in their needed function.

    Over prescribing vaccines is probably not a thing in any reasonable sense for the context we are talking about. As if there is a concern, I'll leave that to real experts.

  17. #22542
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    Overprescribing vaccines is not a thing. For a bacterium to become resistant to an antibiotic often requires the mutation of one gene--or a resistance gene can be obtained from a different species of bacteria--either way it's easy to do. For a virus or bacterium to become resistant requires it to change enough that the immune system of a vaccinated host no longer recognizes it while still maintaining it's ability to harm the host. Some viruses like poiio and smallpox and bacteria like tetanus and diphtheria have been unable to do that. Others like HIV mutate so rapidly that scientists have been unable to come up with a vaccine. (It's more complicated than that but that's as much as I understand.) Flu and covid are in the middle.

    So if you have a vaccine that works you want to vaccinate as many people as possible as quickly as possible so that the virus no longer spreads in the community.

    And remember, the effect of a vaccine series last for many many years, in many cases for life, while antibiotics are only effective as long as a person is taking them. If you have a strep throat and take antbiotics you will be cured but in a short time after you stop the antibiotics you will be able to get another strep throat. For most of the things we vaccinate for (but not Covid) that isn't the case.

    It's not just a science problem. Are companies going to continue to invest in improving covid vaccines when most people haven't gotten the bivalent vaccine and are probably even less likely to get the next one? Are companies going to invest in new antibiotics if doctors and others are going to misuse them so that they rapidly lose effectiveness?

  18. #22543
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    ^^^Thanks OG. If I'm understanding this correctly, the antibiotic doesn't do much to enhance natural immunity but a vaccine does. An antibiotic just kills the bacteria while it's in the host with the bacteria. Plus more options to tweak vaccine to evolve with the virus evolution than there are with antibiotics as the bacteria evolves.. aka superbug..

    Is that what we're saying here?
    Go that way really REALLY fast. If something gets in your way, TURN!

  19. #22544
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    To add .... vaccines have the potential to eradicate or dramatically reduce pathogens at the community level prior to health emergencies whereas antibiotics are only used during acute infection and have little impact on the community (ignoring resistance). In other words, the former is the only viable way to treat a community and the later is supposed to be reserved for sickness (last line of defense). Therefore they both serve critical, yet very different purposes.

    Obviously we are seeing the emergence of drug-resistance virus and bacteria in both spaces. This is nothing new. The probability that a resistant species will emerge is dependent on many factors including the breadth of therapeutic use (positive and negative), the route of infection compared against the tissues that acquire protection (vaccines) and the pathogen itself (different mutation rates).

    @california - one correction ... vaccines generally are not useful when given during infection. So you cannot reserve the administration of vaccines to those that are infected (sick/elderly in your example). And obviously if you do not vaccinate the whole of the population (or at least those that can become repositories for virus), then you have no hope of eliminating the virus. If you forgo the vaccine as a way to remove drug pressure from vaccines that may cause resistant mutations, then you better have a damn good and widely available anti-viral therapy as a back up. Anti-virals are a notoriously hard class of drugs to create partly for the reasons OG mentioned. Oh and eliminating the drug pressure (vaccine) is no guarantee that the virus will not evolve anyway to acquire resistance to your anti-viral therapy.
    Last edited by huckbucket; 01-03-2023 at 08:43 AM.

  20. #22545
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    It also would seem that by its nature a virus will continue mutating regardless of vaccines, and different mutations will peak and decline on a somewhat regular basis, while bacteria mutates much more slowly and the outside force of a ubiquitous antibiotic is what allows a certain resistant mutation to become prominent. Also thats an interesting way to look at the way antibiotics work vs vaccines. Kinda like antibiotics = painkiller, while vaccine = physical therapy in terms of their mechanism of effect.


    The impetus for my question and wanting more info is i saw an (opinion) article talking about how the covid vaccines could be driving the fast mutations of Covid and could possibly create a super virus, similar to a super bacteria with the overprescription of antibiotics. The article was behind a paywall so i couldnt actually read into the reasoning, but i thought it was a good question. Its nice to be able to crowdsource info like this from folks who didnt max out at Bio 101 in college.

  21. #22546
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    Quote Originally Posted by huckbucket View Post
    @california - one correction ... vaccines generally are not useful when given during infection. So you cannot reserve the administration of vaccines to those that are infected (sick/elderly in your example). And obviously if you do not vaccinate the whole of the population (or at least those that can become repositories for virus), then you have no hope of eliminating the virus. If you forgo the vaccine as a way to remove drug pressure from vaccines that may cause resistant mutations, then you better have a damn good and widely available anti-viral therapy as a back up. Anti-virals are a notoriously hard class of drugs to create partly for the reasons OG mentioned. Of and eliminating the drug pressure (vaccine) is no guarantee that the virus will not evolve anyway to acquire resistance your anti-viral therapy.
    So it is unlikely that the rate of viral mutation in the population corresponds to or is driven by the rate of vaccination? I am just thinking of a way to slow down the moving target that is a mutating virus so the vaccines we create are useful for longer periods of time before a new variant becomes dominant and renders the current vaccine much less useful. If we only give vaccines to the most susceptible people, would their protection theoretically last longer at a higher protection level because it would take longer for a new variant to become dominant?

  22. #22547
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    Quote Originally Posted by californiagrown View Post
    So it is unlikely that the rate of viral mutation in the population corresponds to or is driven by the rate of vaccination? I am just thinking of a way to slow down the moving target that is a mutating virus so the vaccines we create are useful for longer periods of time before a new variant becomes dominant and renders the current vaccine much less useful. If we only give vaccines to the most susceptible people, would their protection theoretically last longer at a higher protection level because it would take longer for a new variant to become dominant?
    There is a tried and true way to slow down the evolution of viral pathogens. Wide-spread vaccination.. That's it. Right there. Double points if that vaccine prevents infection in the first place rather than just preventing replication and therefore disease severity. Vaccines that confer nasal immunity are generally good at this although we don't have one yet for covid. The trouble with just vaccinating those at highest risk is that they are often the same population that doesn't generate strong immunity and that strategy doesn't eliminate the respository of virus in non-vaccinated individuals. Therefore, the virus will continue to propogate and evolve.

  23. #22548
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    It seems like there's a desire to imagine viral evolution as an intelligent force that causes mutations in proportion to threats the virus faces rather than just random mutations that happen in proportion to reproduction.

    Please correct me if I'm wrong, but my understanding is that viral variants don't compete with each other for survival except insofar as they drive immune systems to cross immunity. Unlike bacteria, which are living cells that can starve. So the meaning of dominance is different. If you keep one virus from being dominant by letting another one reproduce more that doesn't necessarily mean you get less of the non-dominant one, you just get more of another one and sometimes just more of both. And since more reproduction gives more chances to mutate you get more variants.

    A measure that slows or stops viral spread reduces the total number of variants. And even if we could somehow encourage only the less dangerous variants that wouldn't stop them from evolving toward the same point as their more dangerous cousins--they all started with a common ancestor, what's to stop them becoming more similar again?

  24. #22549
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    Quote Originally Posted by SumJongGuy View Post
    ^^^Thanks OG. If I'm understanding this correctly, the antibiotic doesn't do much to enhance natural immunity but a vaccine does. An antibiotic just kills the bacteria while it's in the host with the bacteria. Plus more options to tweak vaccine to evolve with the virus evolution than there are with antibiotics as the bacteria evolves.. aka superbug..

    Is that what we're saying here?
    you said it better and in a lot fewer words

    Re what Jono said--I'm having trouble understanding why the original covid strain and early variants have disappeared. The only reason I can think of is that enough people developed immunity that there was effective herd immunity to strains that had relatively low infectivity and transmissability (R0) but not to more infective strains like omicron. But the early strains seemed to have disappeared too soon in the pandemic for that to have happened. Anyone?

  25. #22550
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    Have they entirely disappeared or just not found here? As China proves, we only have regional areas of vaccination critical mass. China's vaccines suck.. and we're a global society.. We don't really know fully what variants China (and other places) is battling right now do we? Hopefully most other major areas have vaccines that do work to mitigate the threats China is currently dealing with.. or we're fucked again..
    Go that way really REALLY fast. If something gets in your way, TURN!

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