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posted by Fnord666 on Tuesday March 24 2020, @04:54AM   Printer-friendly
from the lock-em-down dept.

Politicians won't admit it yet, but it's time to prepare—physically and psychologically—for a sudden stop to all life outside your home.

[...] Whether you are reading this in your living room in Vancouver, office in London, or on a subway in New York City, you need to think hard, and fast, about two crucial questions: Where, and with whom, do you want to spend the next six to 12 weeks of your life, hunkered down for the epidemic duration? And what can you do to make that place as safe as possible for yourself and those around you?

Your time to answer those questions is very short—a few days, at most. Airports will close, trains will shut down, gasoline supplies may dwindle, and roadblocks may be set up. Nations are closing their borders, and as the numbers of sick rise, towns, suburbs, even entire counties will try to shut the virus out by blocking travel. Wherever you decide to settle down this week is likely to be the place in which you will be stuck for the duration of your epidemic.

To appreciate what lies ahead for the United States, Canada, Mexico, and the United Kingdom, pay heed to Italy, France, and Germany. The United States, for example, is currently tracking exactly where Italy was about 10 days ago. France and Germany, which track two to five days ahead of the United States, are now revving up measures akin to those taken by Italy, including lockdowns on movement and social activity. In a matter of days, the United States will follow suit.

[...] Once tough location decisions have been made, the household must be readied for a long siege. While panic-buying has led to stockpiles of toilet paper and hand sanitizer, getting through eight months of confinement with others will require a great deal more, both physically and psychologically. This is especially true for households that span generations.

Long-term confinement that includes children undergoing remote schooling and adults trying to work requires designated spaces for each individual, a powerful Internet signal and Wi-Fi router, and a great deal of shared patience. Everybody in the household must understand how the coronavirus is spread, and what steps each should follow to eliminate their personal risk of passing infection to others in the home.

The virus is transmitted by droplets and fomites[*]—it isn't like measles, capable of drifting about in the air for hours. It dehydrates quickly if not inside water, mucus, or fomite droplets. The size of the droplets may be far below what the human eye can see, but they are gravity-sensitive, and will fall from an individual's mouth down, eventually, to the nearest lower surface—table, desk, floor. You do not need to clean upward.

However, a newly published study, backed by the National Institutes of Health, found that the virus survives in "aerosols for up to three hours, up to four hours on copper, up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to two to three days on plastic and stainless steel." This means an uncleaned surface can pose a risk to members of the household for a very long time—a doorknob, tabletop, kitchen counter or stainless steel utensil.

[*] Wikipedia entry on fomites:

any inanimate object that, when contaminated with or exposed to infectious agents (such as pathogenic bacteria, viruses or fungi), can transfer disease to a new host.

[...] In addition to objects in hospital settings, other common fomites for humans are cups, spoons, pencils, bath faucet handles, toilet flush levers, door knobs, light switches, handrails, elevator buttons, television remote controls, pens, touch screens, common-use phones, keyboards, and computer mice, coffeepot handles, countertops, and any other items that may be frequently touched by different people and infrequently cleaned.

Researchers have discovered that smooth (non-porous) surfaces like door knobs transmit bacteria and viruses better than porous materials like paper money because porous, especially fibrous, materials absorb and trap the contagion, making it harder to contract through simple touch. Nonetheless, fomites may include soiled clothes, towels, linens, handkerchiefs, and surgical dressings


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  • (Score: 5, Informative) by rleigh on Tuesday March 24 2020, @06:46AM (20 children)

    by rleigh (4887) on Tuesday March 24 2020, @06:46AM (#974822) Homepage

    hydroxychloroquine is a poison used as fish tank cleaner. I just read a story about people who died after taking it. It's lethal.

    choroquine phosphate is the drug used for anti-malarial medication. It's this which has the potential to be useful for helping with coronavirus. It's a completely separate compound.

    I am replying in case anyone reads your post and acts upon it. It's irresponsible and dangerous to publish incorrect advice which could result in fatalities. Anyone who is thinking of getting some chloroquine should carefully read about what it is, and consult a pharmacist. Don't take random poisons and hope for the best.

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 24 2020, @06:49AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 24 2020, @06:49AM (#974826)

    Don't take random poisons and hope for the best.

    Well, true, yet you may still take random poisons as long as you settle for hoping just for better. (large grin)

  • (Score: 3, Informative) by RS3 on Tuesday March 24 2020, @07:36AM

    by RS3 (6367) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday March 24 2020, @07:36AM (#974831)

    I appreciate your caution, but I did not make it up, nor incorrectly copy-paste it from all over the news articles. Perhaps you're confused?

    https://www.drugs.com/hydroxychloroquine.html [drugs.com]

    https://duckduckgo.com/?q=hydroxychloroquine [duckduckgo.com]

    https://duckduckgo.com/?q=hydroxychloroquine+covid-19 [duckduckgo.com]

  • (Score: 3, Informative) by Magic Oddball on Tuesday March 24 2020, @09:57AM (2 children)

    by Magic Oddball (3847) on Tuesday March 24 2020, @09:57AM (#974872) Journal

    It's also the primary treatment for systemic lupus erythematosus; my mother was on it from 1996 through last November, when consistent negative ANA results and her age finally led doctors to decide she's in remission or cured or whatever. That said, while she suffered no ill effects, I definitely wouldn't recommend that anybody take it unless it's under a doctor's orders.

    • (Score: 5, Interesting) by driverless on Tuesday March 24 2020, @10:40AM (1 child)

      by driverless (4770) on Tuesday March 24 2020, @10:40AM (#974886)

      It's been banned in many malaria countries in Africa because it's too dangerous to take unless you're under close medical supervision. Expect to see more deaths in the near future arising from the chief twitter recommending it repeatedly.

      I'll leave it to the peanut gallery to discuss whether Trump supporters poisoning themselves via Trump's miracle cure is poetic justice or not.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 24 2020, @04:19PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 24 2020, @04:19PM (#975062)

        > I'll leave it to the peanut gallery to discuss whether Trump supporters poisoning themselves via Trump's miracle cure is poetic justice or not.

        Hey thanks! I think they should be given the choice of hydroquinine (or whatever fish tank cleaner ends up with Trump branding) or a vaccine.

  • (Score: 4, Informative) by EvilSS on Tuesday March 24 2020, @01:29PM (5 children)

    by EvilSS (1456) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday March 24 2020, @01:29PM (#974952)

    hydroxychloroquine is a poison used as fish tank cleaner.

    No Chloroquine Phosphate is a drug that was used to prevent and treat malaria and is a currently used to treat fish for certain parasitic infections. Hydroxychloroquine is a drug used to treat people for malaria and some autoimmune diseases today due to it being less toxic than chloroquine phosphate. Neither is used to clean fishtanks.

    • (Score: 3, Informative) by RS3 on Tuesday March 24 2020, @04:39PM (1 child)

      by RS3 (6367) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday March 24 2020, @04:39PM (#975084)

      Thank you, but caution: I got modded "troll" for trying to give out that information.

      I guess it's because of something Trump said / tweeted. I don't read Trump, and I had no idea it was being attributed to Trump. And frankly I really don't care. Trump has nothing to do with it. I read medical news and information.

      But do a quick search on Chloroquine Phosphate and you'll find that is also used medicinally.

      This is not to you EvilSS, but anyone:

      Many many medications are poisonous. Chemotherapy is some of the most known to be poison. The hope is that the chemo is more poisonous to the cancer than it is to the rest of the person.

      Does every post on SN (or wherever) have to have 100 disqualifiers? Like: don't do this on your own? Isn't it common knowledge that you only take medications when prescribed and monitored by a doctor? Again, does that have to be spelled out in every post about medications?

      • (Score: 4, Interesting) by Sulla on Wednesday March 25 2020, @12:30AM

        by Sulla (5173) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday March 25 2020, @12:30AM (#975266) Journal

        Not sure about where you live, but in Oregon hydroxychloroquine is by prescription. The pharmacy that my wife works at and one of my best friends is a pharmacist at has had several prescriptions come through for hydroxychloroquine and z-pack for treatment of the virus.

        Side effects
        https://www.drugs.com/sfx/hydroxychloroquine-side-effects.html [drugs.com]

        Alternatively if you are in the states you could drink eight liters of tonic water day to get the same medicinal effects from hydroxychloroquine. Would probably need to work out a lot to burn off those calories. Outside of where the FDA makes your drinks weak, you can probably get a stronger tonic water. Mix with gin for most preferred results.

        My pharmacist friend said his primary concern with the drug is irregular heartbeats and blood pressure. The good news is that he said that overall its very well tolerated and the side effects are reversible with discontinuing of the drug. If you get the virus and you are in a risk group for serious complications it might be worth talking to your doctor about the possible trials out there. Unfortunately for diabetics hydroxychloroquine is not going to be the solution as it can cause problems for diabetics. There is also Remdesivir that you might be able to get in the trial for, but I don't know about the side effects there. You could also do nothing. 20% chance of needing hospital care and oxygen, then possibly needing a ventilator.

        --
        Ceterum censeo Sinae esse delendam
    • (Score: 2) by legont on Wednesday March 25 2020, @04:17AM (2 children)

      by legont (4179) on Wednesday March 25 2020, @04:17AM (#975331)

      It is also used to treat arthritis, so many old people are used to it.

      It is on the World Health Organization's List of Essential Medicines, the safest and most effective medicines needed in a health system. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydroxychloroquine [wikipedia.org]

      --
      "Wealth is the relentless enemy of understanding" - John Kenneth Galbraith.
      • (Score: 2) by EvilSS on Wednesday March 25 2020, @03:44PM (1 child)

        by EvilSS (1456) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday March 25 2020, @03:44PM (#975494)
        RA is an autoimmune disease. https://www.medicinenet.com/rheumatoid_arthritis/article.htm [medicinenet.com]
        • (Score: 2) by legont on Wednesday March 25 2020, @05:01PM

          by legont (4179) on Wednesday March 25 2020, @05:01PM (#975535)

          Some says that the reason coronavirus is so deadly is immune system overreaction once it gets below vocal box. It does make the drug controversial as one probably wants good immune system until the last stage.

          --
          "Wealth is the relentless enemy of understanding" - John Kenneth Galbraith.
  • (Score: 3, Informative) by aixylinux on Tuesday March 24 2020, @03:55PM (1 child)

    by aixylinux (7294) on Tuesday March 24 2020, @03:55PM (#975039)

    The difference between medicine and poison is the dosage. I take warfarin (a rat poison) daily for AFIB.

    • (Score: 2, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 24 2020, @04:21PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 24 2020, @04:21PM (#975064)

      I take alcohol (a hand sanitizer) to deal with... my issues.

  • (Score: 3, Informative) by Hartree on Tuesday March 24 2020, @04:18PM (2 children)

    by Hartree (195) on Tuesday March 24 2020, @04:18PM (#975060)

    Hydroxychloroquine is used as it has LESS negative effects that chloroquine.

    Either has to be monitored closely when used. It's still a work in progress if either is more beneficial than harmful. There is a French study that looks quite promising.

    My concern is that your alarmist tone would lead to someone resisting it if a qualified physician prescribed it to them. Long before Trump said anything (weeks) there had been a lot of interest in the medical science community that it might be helpful and it was being actively tested in several countries. Just as Trump's blathering does not mean it works, equally, it has no bearing on if it does work.

    Anyone taking it on their own after getting a supply of it is probably a fool and at risk. Medicines often have side effects and only someone with the training and experience like a physician can evaluate those risks and make a good decision. So, if your doctor prescribes it for you, take it.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 26 2020, @03:50AM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 26 2020, @03:50AM (#975716)

      There is a French study that looks quite promising.

      If by study, you mean this one [mediterranee-infection.com], I would not call it "quite promising". It's full of methodological errors [sciencebasedmedicine.org] and likely would never pass peer review in ordinary times. They basically dropped all the patients who got sicker while undergoing the treatment, making their conclusions highly suspect. A closer look at their data shows that PCR was not done [twitter.com] for most of their controls to assess what their viral load really was. If it were my life on the line I'd not be waiting in line to try it unless I had no other options. Likely the only reason why this garbage is being as widely considered at all is because President Trump tweeted about it being a "game changer".

      • (Score: 2) by Hartree on Thursday March 26 2020, @08:18PM

        by Hartree (195) on Thursday March 26 2020, @08:18PM (#976067)

        I'd briefly read the report on the 20th, pointed there by a post from Columbia University Virologist Vince Raccaniello. This was before Trump commented on it, and before the critiques (with quite valid points, I might add) were made by Drosten and others, and I hadn't read about them as yet.

        As I noted above, it's a work in progress at this time and anyone deciding to take it on their own would be foolish. It's being followed up by other studies that are better designed and when those are ready, we'll have a much better idea if this is useful or a mirage.

        I stand by my advice that if someone has a serious case of COVID-19 and their doctor feels it's worth trying that they go along with that.

        I think that we can agree that the best thing for now is the politicians to shut up about things they know little about and let the medical research community work through it. The Arizona case showed that pols saying uninformed things can have tragic consequences.

  • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Tuesday March 24 2020, @04:33PM (2 children)

    by JoeMerchant (3937) on Tuesday March 24 2020, @04:33PM (#975079)

    Simple quinine is available (in low doses) in tonic water, my 72 year old mother has been bingeing on tonic water for a few days now.

    --
    John Galt is a selfish crybaby [huffpost.com].
    • (Score: 1) by Sulla on Wednesday March 25 2020, @07:28AM (1 child)

      by Sulla (5173) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday March 25 2020, @07:28AM (#975361) Journal

      Depending on where you live the dosage is quite low. If you are drinking this swill the FDA allows companies in the US to call tonic water you need seven or eight liters a day to get a dosage that would give any benefit.

      .... not that that is preventing me from drinking MEDICINAL Gin and Tonics all day erry day

      My understanding is that overseas you can get higher potency tonic.

      --
      Ceterum censeo Sinae esse delendam
      • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Wednesday March 25 2020, @02:16PM

        by JoeMerchant (3937) on Wednesday March 25 2020, @02:16PM (#975461)

        True and good strategy, my medicinal tonic of choice is the dark and stormy: rum in ginger beer - more effective than cough syrup at suppressing coughs, muscle relaxant, and general stress reducer - and the ginger beer increases bowel motility, if that's of any concern.

        --
        John Galt is a selfish crybaby [huffpost.com].
  • (Score: 2) by sjames on Tuesday March 24 2020, @08:45PM

    by sjames (2882) on Tuesday March 24 2020, @08:45PM (#975193) Journal

    Well, if you down a few bottles of tylenol at once, that will kill you as well. The dose is key.

    Chloroquine has been used safely for decades in a proper dose. It is a well understood generic drug. I'm guessing the people who died either got confused and took something else or they decided if dose X is good, 10X is better.

    I haven't seen any advice to score some grey market chloroquine on ebay and take it all at once.

    If I or someone I know should contract COVID-19, I will definitely discuss chloroquine with the doctor.