Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I have expressed my skepticism for the novelty of the omicron variant; it's been circulating worldwide for more than a year, undifferentiated from delta dominant pandemic that captured the imaginations of vaccine marketers and infectious disease "experts" who influence gov trade and domestic policies.

Yet in a period of 27 days, between "discovery" of SARS-CoV-2 omicron variant in South Africa (24 Nov- 21 Dec), despite federal "travel ban" between US and eight (8) sub-Saharan nations and "shortages" of COVID-19 "rapid antibody" test kits--none of which approved by FDA to detect the omicron variant--several US cities have announced a suspiciously ubiquitous increase of 73% COVID-19 cases, attributed to the omicron variant... alone.

Neither publicly reported COVID-19 data nor abstruse mRNA technical audits appear to support such a SURGE of "excess death," attributed to delta communicability... alone. Nonetheless, to conform to a widely publicized prediction by such experts as Mr Fauci that "raging" omicron variant would rapidly replace delta as the leading cause of death, US press quickly has assembled a feature story to stimulate "herd" vigilance, "mandates," and demand for brand-name prophylactic ahhh devices.
First confirmed US OMICRON DEATH reported in Houston, usurping earlier UK tabloid boasting death with omicron. Sadly, this PR is itself short on novelty.

"The death reported this afternoon was of a man between the ages of 50-60 years old who was unvaccinated and had been infected with Covid-19 previously. The individual was at higher risk of severe complications from Covid-19 due to his unvaccinated status and had underlying health conditions," Harris County Public Health announced Monday.

Omicron has displaced the delta variant as the dominant coronavirus strain circulating in Harris County, whose seat is Houston, with Houston Methodist Hospital's director of microbiology Dr. Wesley Long reporting on Sunday that the new variant accounts for 82% of its symptomatic* patients since late last week.

* symptoms in vivo: easily the least reliable "bio marker" of a specific variant or its "high transmissibility", much less onset of COVID-19 severity. My Z-informant, for example, attended an employee holiday event 10 Dec. assuming all guests were vaccinated. No one was masked. Monday, the CEO advised, one guest tested positive over the weekend. A rush to test ensued (public sites, as kits were scarce), resulting in ~50% pos, 0 hospitalizations.
by Cat on Tue Dec 21st, 2021 at 09:55:14 PM EST
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by Cat on Wed Dec 22nd, 2021 at 01:48:40 PM EST
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Learn something

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Wed Dec 22nd, 2021 at 05:27:39 PM EST
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I have over the past 23 months of having sifted "8M COVID-19 stories" in the naked city, more than necessary to formulate a scientific opinion of least cost/benefit pharmaceutical intervention that's "right for me." (boilerplate "consumer-patient" compliance lit)

"Low-tech" (not jeebus) or nothing.

My path is not your path. I've detected a pattern in mechanism of action (MOA) disclaimers in academic "discussions" or legal notes found in every.single. advertisement: "common adverse reaction" notices; but you (pl.) have to gather the bread crumbs in order to find a reasonable "pathway" to your health care objective d/b/a "quality of life"... or death.

I've been living on the sidelines with one of the most mysterious autoimmune diseases on the planet (MS) for 24 years, thereby being "uniquely positioned"--as the PR industry is wont to say--to evaluate prospective claims, statistical descriptions of, and GAPS in clinical and palliative outcomes, published by industry incumbents and "market entrants" in "my space" of "standard of care". Reasonable expectation of toxicity ("secondary conditions") arising from contraindicated combinations of "immunomodulating" drugs has been an turnkey risk criterion in my book since Day1 diagnosis for myself as well as propounded by intimate knowledge of deleterious effects of disease "modifying treatments" prescribe to my parents (RIP) that are routinely prescribed to similarly situated patients.

More significant, only this last month, have I acquired (1) relevant, personal experience with an experimental medication "approved" by the FDA that adversely reacted with another medication whose efficacy is established and (2) access to proprietary focus group session recordings, prepared by a PR firm for a couple of high-profile pharmaceutical manufacturers soliciting cancer and MS endorsements from "health care provider" and patient respondents to "language" prompts. So.

You do you.

by Cat on Wed Dec 22nd, 2021 at 08:38:01 PM EST
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Here is the response from my kid-bro, transformed from DOJ atty to corp "health care" partner since 2006, when I reminded him ONE MONTH AGO that a common adverse reaction (Y1) to the experimental drug prescribed by my neurologist is neutropenia (AKA leukopenia) in a PANDEMIC:

NO PROBLEM! Get a prescription for Neulasta

by Cat on Wed Dec 22nd, 2021 at 09:24:33 PM EST
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Sun et al., "Association Between Immune Dysfunction and COVID-19 Breakthrough Infection After SARS-CoV-2 Vaccination in the US" 28 Dec
Meaning  The findings suggest that persons with immune dysfunction are at much higher risk for contracting a breakthrough infection and thus should use nonpharmaceutical interventions (eg, mask wearing) and alternative vaccination approaches (eg, additional dose or immunogenicity testing) even after full vaccination.
Here I am, exercising common sense risk management, except for this "DDI" interlude prescribed by my neurologist IN A PANDEMIC who assured me I have nothing to lose by losing leukocytes in me blood, IF a certain FDA-approved "investigational" pharmacology perhaps inhibits lesion growths in me CNS over the next two (2) years.
by Cat on Thu Dec 30th, 2021 at 04:41:38 PM EST
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This cohort study received approval from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine Institutional Review Board. No informed consent was obtained because the study used de[-]identified data. We followed the Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) reporting guideline.
archived "COVID-related" behavioral study
I participated in this weekly, web-based survey for ~ 10 months, and not one questionnaire--not even the initial Rx screening--queried ADRs. It was a tiresome, repetitive template. But let's presume Rx initial Rx screening (no immuno-mudulating regimen) and subsequent COVID-pos contact tracing, symptom queries as well as Likert "mood" traps (none) excluded my exposure to A/B conditional testing: I withdrew from the exercise with the distinct impression it was a wasted opportunity.  
by Cat on Thu Dec 30th, 2021 at 05:54:59 PM EST
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wut: "We used December 10, 2020, the date that the US Food and Drug Administration approved the SARS-CoV-2 vaccines for general use [?!], as the beginning of the study observation period."
by Cat on Thu Dec 30th, 2021 at 06:00:15 PM EST
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This study has several limitations. First, it is limited by the nature of using EMR-based data, which could potentially lead to misclassified immune dysfunction and comorbid conditions, although we anticipate this misclassification to be nondifferential. Second, SARS-CoV-2 vaccination status was captured in the EMR of large academic medical centers, which may not fully account for vaccinations that occur outside of their hospital settings, such as pharmacies and mass vaccination sites. However, this underreporting is less likely to affect patients with immune dysfunction because they are more likely to receive regular care, and would not alter the comparisons of risk. Third, we did not evaluate the risk for a breakthrough infection among patients with other immune dysfunctions, such as cancer and other rheumatoid diseases, nor did we directly evaluate exposure to immunosuppressant regimens. However, the sensitivity analysis we performed that excluded patients with cancer and other rheumatoid diseases yielded consistent results with the primary analyses.
by Cat on Thu Dec 30th, 2021 at 06:35:11 PM EST
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