Coronavirus Disease - COVID-19 Updates have been moved to this page
You can find basic details on this illness, as well as methods to support your resistance to the virus at the original Coronavirus page. This original COVID-19 page is constantly being updated.
Many people are worried about what happens if this virus was to break out in their city, so if this is you, check out the "Prevention And Protection In A Pandemic" article.
On February 11, 2020 the World Health Organization announced an official name for the disease that is causing the 2019 novel coronavirus outbreak, and that name is COVID-19.
Get the latest Corona Virus COVID-19 details from the World Health Organization.
In the United States your state health department is a good place to get local data on this virus. In Oregon where I live this is the Oregon Health Department link.
See the bottom of this page for some data on how Chinese herbs are being used.
To keep from getting infectious disease, improve your resistance to disease by supporting your immune system, eating healthy, get exercise, sun, and refreshing sleep. See more details on the primary Corona virus page.
To give this perspective, the CDC - Center of Disease Control in USA, estimates from 10-1-2019 to 4-04-2020, there has been 39,000,000-55,000,000 cases of flu illness , 420,00 -740,000 hospitalized due to the flu and 24,000 to 62,000 flu deaths this winter. There is thought to be a bigger fatality with the COVID-19 than the flu.
In the 2009 H1N1 Pandemic - Swine Flu from April 12,2009 - April 10, 2010, the CDC estimated there were 60.8 million cases, 274,304 hospitalizations and 12,469 deaths in the United States from (H1N1)pdm09virus. We did not do much of anything out of the ordinary when this took place. Will this virus be worse, the same or not as deadly, we have no way to know.
Number of Cases And Deaths
Please realize that most countries, including the U.S.A. are testing those that are the sickest and if we were testing everyone, the death rate would be much less than that listed. We are not testing those who are less sick. If we did, it would cause the death rates to decrease significantly. I have thought for some time, that we would eventually test people who are not seriously ill, but no this has not taken place yet. Therefore, I have quit listing the death rate as it is not indicative of the real death rate and seems silly to keep tabs on it.
Studies being undertaken on people to look for antibiodies to COVID-19 are now finding that indeed as we had suspected, there are more cases of COVID-19 than the previous testing was finding.
Los Angelos, California: 50 times more people may have had COVID-19 than the prior testing had shown.
Stanford University study: 3000 people tested and it was found that 2.49-4.16 percent of Santa Clara County's resitdents had been exposed to the SARS-COV-2 virus and had developed antibodies. The public health reports claim 2000 people had the virus, but the Stanford study claims 50-85 times that really had the disease. This makes the death rate 50-85 times less than previously thought also.
New York City: Early antibody testing data from New York City showed an infection rate of 21.2% in the city.
There are some issues with both testing procedures and the serology test used. We need to do more testing. However, anyone who thinks they will get a clear picture of how lethal the virus is by testing only those who are actively and seriously sick, that gives us very skewed data. We know there are many people who have been sick and unable to get tested as well as those that did not even know they were sick. Time will tell us what the real virulence of this disease is and it's real death rate.
Germany: A German study shows the COVID-19 fatality rate is about 0.4%.
Continued Frustration With Testing
As you may have heard, some of the antibody tests are being pulled. I am not surprised as the CDC has been allowing them to be used without the usual testing of the test itself. This was due to the emergency status. The use of the test does eventually show if it is specific or sensitive and that is now being found out as practitioners loose faith in some tests.
Blood Types Protective
It appears people with blood type A may be more susceptible to COVID-19 than people with blood type O. Blood type b and AB may be more susceptible than A or O.
Methylation And COVID-19
It also appears that the SARS-CoV-2 virus more easily enters ACE2 receptors that have hypomethylated CpG islands.
Frustration With Testing
Usually, when you test for a pathogen you want to know how often the test is correct when the test is positive or negative. However, it appears we still don't have this data. Therefore there are people hospitalized with COVID-19 listed as known positives and those that tested negative but show signs and symptoms of COVID19.
The PCR test that has been being used requires a swab be inserted into the nasal passage all the way to the back of the throat. (as much fun as it sounds) Many practitioners are not actually use to doing this and it is thought that many false negatives may be due to this swab process being done incorrectly. No one knows at what point in the illness the test is most likely to be positive either.
The problem with a false negative is that a person who is told they do not have the illness, but really does can go out and affect others. Additionally, they may not seek help if they get seriously ill until late in the game.
Eventually, as practitioners collect data and categorize it over time, this information will help evaluate the testing. For now, we simply don't know how good the testing is.
Newer Quicker Tests
New tests with quicker turn around have been created, but we still have the same problems getting basic materials needed to process these tests. The issue is that the United States simply has not made these types of items for years and even basic materials to make them are not available in this country. To make it even more difficult, some of the materials such as specific swabs needed, are only available from Italy where they are undergoing their own health issues.
Ventilator Protocols Questioned
It turns out that COVID-19 which was originally thought to act like an acute respiratory distress syndrome actually acts more like high-altitude pulmonary edema (HAPE). This means the current use of ventilators may be causing lung injury in COVID-19 patients and practitioners are reconsidering the need for lung-protective strategies that utilize lower pressure settings. Instead of high positive end-expiratory pressure, physicians should perhaps consider the lowest possible positive end-expiratory pressure and gentle ventilation.
What About Angiotensin converting Enzyme Inhibitors
The SARS-CoV-2) that causes COVID-19, uses the SARS-COV receptor angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) 2 for entry into target cells . The interface between ACE2 and the viral spike protein SARS-S has been studied and the efficiency of ACE2 usage was found to be a key determinant of SARS-CoV transmissibility.
Animal experiments have shown that the ACE-inhibitor lisinopril and the angiotensin-receptor blocker losartan can significantly increase mRNA expression of cardiac ACE2. We don't know if the expression of ACE2 receptor in the virus targeted cells increased by the use of ACE-inhibitor/angiotensin-receptor blocker and would therefore put the patient more at risk for a severe course of COVID-19 should they get it and be on an ACE-inhibitor or blocker.
Can I Catch This Virus Off A Sufrace - March 27
Well we really don't know. We know the virus can live on some surfaces for up to a few days, but we don't know how virulent it will be on that surface. If you touch it, the virus may not have the ability to invade cells in your body, which is what makes it dangerous. We simply don't know this yet. We know some people shed extreme amounts of virus while others don't? The Lancet medical journal described a couple hospitalized with severe infections. They had 372 contacts. Not a single one of those contacts ever converted to positive.
Using Plasma/Sera As Treatment - March 25
There is talk about using plasma/serum from those who have recovered from COVID-19.
A Great Lecture On Traditional Chinese Medicine Used For COVID-19
Dr. John Chen on COVID-19
Younger People Dying - March 19
According to the CDC Morbidity And Mortality Weekly Report, A review of 44 deaths, showed more than a third occurred among adults aged 85 years and older, and 46% occurred among adults aged 65-84 years, and 20% occurred among adults aged 20-64 years.
People aged 19 years and younger appear to have milder COVID-19 illness, with almost no hospitalizations or deaths reported to date in the United States in this age group.
Overall, older patients in this group were the most likely to be hospitalized, to be admitted to ICU, and to die of COVID-19. A total of 31% of the cases, 45% of hospitalizations, 53% of ICU admissions, and 80% of deaths occurred in patients aged 65 years and older.
These results also might overestimate the prevalence of severe disease because the initial approach to testing for COVID-19 focused on people with more severe disease.
Coronavirus Disease Updates On Treatment
Both Western medicine and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) are being used side by side for best results to curb COVID-19. TCM includes herbal medicines and aupuncture. A member of the Chinese central government work group, guiding the epidemic control effort in Hubei province said TCM is being used to rapidly improve the symptoms of mild patients, shorten the course of disease for patients with severe symptoms and reduce the possibility of mild infections from becoming severe.
The latest clinical research on 102 patients with light symptoms found TCM treatment can shorten the average length of a patient's stay in hospital by 2.2 days while enhancing the recovery rate by 33 percent compared with the control group.
The transfer rate from mild symptoms to severe symptoms dropped by 27.4 percent, and the number of lymphocytes, an important indicator of the health condition of patients who are recovering, increased by 70 percent, according to the clinical research.
One herbal formula, known as Qingfei Paidu Soup (which has a variety of tweaked formulas you may find on the internet), has emerged as an effective prescription and has been listed in the latest diagnosis and treatment guide book. I decided not to list the formula as it is not a safe formula for everyone to use, and I am concerned that it would not be used approrpiately, leading to people possibly hurting themselves by taking it when not appropriate. Also it is important to note that these basic formulas are changed for individuals as needed. What makes the formula safe and useful is the practitioner tweaking it to use for each unique individual.
Common Formulas Being Used
The National Health Commission and the State Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine recommend Qingfei Paidu decoction. Clinical observation and data analysis have been performed on the therapeutic efficacy of this classical TCM formula. One formula for Qingfei Paidu decoction appearing on multiple sites, including, listed 21 ingredients. The top ingredients in terms of quantity are calcium sulfate, Radix bupleuri (common name bupleurum, effective in the treatment of alternating chills and fever; may induce headache or nausea), Poria cocos (efficacy in draining dampness and transforming phlegm; concurrent administration of diuretics contraindicated), Radix dioscoreae (Chinese yam, known to tonify qi and yin of the lungs, spleen, and stomach; may have hypoglycemic effects, use with caution in comorbid hepatobiliary disease).
Pneumonia Formula No. 1, developed by the Chinese Medicine Department at Guangzhou Eighth People's Hospital, and its variations Pneumonia Formula No. 2, Pneumonia Formula No. 3, Pneumonia Formula No. 4, and Pneumonia Formula No. 5 are also in use. Formula No. 1 has achieved favorable clinical results in Guangzhou. Formula No. 1 includes two herbs that clear heat and relieve toxicity, Flos lonicerae (honeysuckle flower) and Fructus forsythiae (forsythia fruit), along with 16 other ingredients.
Previous Data On TCM And COVID-19
- China's state media, Xinhua published an article that an oral herbal medicine could "inhibit" the COVID-19. However, this was from in vitro (petri dish) research by the Chinese Academy of Sciences where the herbal formula of Honeysuckle, Chinese skullcap and Forsythia were shown to kill the virus. This was not a clinical trial and therefore we do not know if this formula inhibits the virus in the human body.
- On January 27th, the National Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine started clinical trials in four provinces have been studying a traditional Chinese Medicine formula that has been used on 214 patients with confirmed COVID-19 On Feb. 6th they said the formula is looking promising.
- Liu Qingquan, head of the Beijing Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine, and affiliated with Capital Medical University, advises the central government on how to make full use of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) in treating COVID-19, as well as offering other suggestions on prevention and treatment. His hospital has been getting good results with the use of TCM in conjunction with western medicine. Liu said TCM has a lot to offer people with the novel coronavirus.
- Researchers at the state-run academy, a top government think tank, are also studying the potential use of a plant commonly known as Japanese knotweed to alleviate symptoms.
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