Last reply 3 months ago
Dom’s Covid Diary – Sat 25th Apr

Testing and vaccines and other things you may like.

Hi there. In a slight change to the daily updates – a self-imposed burden so no sympathy for me – I have settled on an occasional Covid-19 diary. This helps me as much as you as I now have a way to channel the instant sharing urge as I continuously come across items I think you may like. It stops me spamming the forum.

I have a bunch of stuff from good sources to follow. I think a few things ought to be addressed first.

Testing – We cover this in the next two videos to be released. Presently, we are at 7 videos and there are 3 more in the wings! Things to know in order to put the rather over-enthusiastic babbling of our politicians into context. Across the world the politician’s main goal is, over everything, to get re-elected again. First and foremost it is about getting re-elected again. Everything they say is governed by the desire that they are never to be the one holding the can if the wheel comes off and everything goes terribly wrong.

There are presently two types. Think swab and blood. Swab tests are a Q-tip (swab) up the nose or the inside of the cheek, it varies, to check whether you are infected at this point in time. It is very unreliable though. An NHS trust study from God’s Own Country found it was woefully inaccurate. That is the, am I infected at this point in time test. The blood test is for antibodies to see if you have developed an immunity to Covid-19. This is the go back to work test that is required to safely phase out the most strenuous lockdown restrictions. Nonetheless, if you do fall into a very vulnerable category and receive care, either from a loved one or an external carer, you will have to rely on a vaccine. The external people to you can easily be carriers, even if they are asymptomatic.

Vaccines – this is really annoying. Yes, there are vaccines in development. No – they absolutely definitely WILL NOT be available, even for special cases, in the next 12 months. What has really sped up the initial stage of vaccine development are the huge leaps forward in computing power and genetic engineering. They have compressed years into months, even weeks. Previously, getting a good base to work on to work out how to attack the problem was a lengthy process. Vaccines either used to be live – something out of the question for MSers – or attenuated which was also referred to as killed. Essentially an inactive replica of the baddie so your body can manufacture defences. Think of the flu jab for an attenuated jab. The super cool (to a geek like me) thing is that now they can make an exact replica of the baddy through this rapid genetic engineering and break it up into DNA/RNA (genetic things) components to inject them.

The thing that simply cannot speed up is human trials. Sure, there are prototypes (Oxford and at least 25 other places in the world at the moment) but that doesn’t mean that they work and they are safe. Medical history is littered with examples of one, other or both. Testing in people is laborious, slow, fraught with problems and is at least 12 months if it all goes smoothly. Some companies – with their eye on the financial prize no doubt – are trying to advocate a syncretic mix of the two. They are a distinct minority and are not being welcomed by the wider community. It is too risky, despite government-backed liability waivers. Certainly in the USA, the Trump administration is exonerating them from harming you and/or producing and selling a jab that doesn’t work well. No surprise there then.

Not telling you this to get you down, just to set realistic expectations as the media is so full of hype and BS. As ever. The UK will need social distancing until at least end of the year, says Whitty

Expect it to all kick-off again next winter. ☹

I am on ocrelizumab and it is nice to see that it has moved into a lower risk category yet. If you are taking a DMT then this is reliable info. Sod what the sledgehammer to crack a nut messaging is from the government. If you really want to know where you stand regarding the drug, then this is the best source. There are many behind the scenes, super experienced and v cleaver, contributors. And more on the same topic:

Ocrelizumab does not require you to shield and, if you are listed as needing to shield and you know you are ok you are perfectly within your rights to opt-out. I did just that with my (Oxfordshire) County Council as I feel rather fraudulent consuming already stretched resources.

Shedding the virus. I love how that sounds. Like shedding a shedding pet. Nonetheless, masks are now a ‘good thing’ to protect others so no more tittering at tourists in London wearing masks. It turns out they are just ahead of us. Anyhow, Nature is a highly reputable publication

If you do like to stay informed and you want to filter out rubbish and get MS-specific content then do look at the Neuro Academy, which is historically a professional’s place, that now runs patient webinars too. They are free and easy. Just sign up here: Some are obviously for docs and you’ll be politely turned away. Don’t take it personally, that is a regulatory requirement they are required to follow.

I am going to sign-off. I can’t really let it pass without saying that under no circumstances should you drink/inject/drip into your eyeball etc any form of household disinfectant or other cleaning product. Furthermore, any attempt to light your inside (because the Ginger Hitler never tiptoes around misinformation, he is a full-throttle all-American, World-Class bullshitter) other than with the light that Jesus brings you is also a bad idea. No shining torches in places they were never intended for or you will make it onto this website

Stay safe, wash your hands, don’t trust the Donald or the Johnson.

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