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May 02, 2020



Yikes. That does not sound great. I hope he's sorted out, and that you don't get sick.


Alison - I am amazed I’m not sick. He really is washing his hands a lot, and I haven’t touched my face in weeks. I have been so worried about him, mainly. He says that my compromised immune system will win me a test.


I really really hope it all goes well. And hooray for him finally doing something about it! (and really, really hope you do not get Sick, although if you could snag one of the asymptomatic/really-low-level cases and then just not have to worry about it anymore, that would be faaaabulous. But since that seems unlikely, really hope that All The Handwashing pays off!)


KC - I don’t know about “not have to worry about it anymore” - I thought the current thinking is that it’s like the cold - you can catch it again and again.


Current thinking is... somewhat uncertain. In a comments section today, I read that there was a just-published 277-person study looking at immunity after infection that showed promising results, but... I can't find that study anywhere, so. Hm.

I have generally read:
1. it's just like the cold! you catch it over and over!
2. it's more like the flu, in that a) if you already have antibodies to something similar, it won't be as bad, and b) you're immune to that specific one, but not all future mutations

I have not seen option 1 as much or as widely - there's a whole lot of "herd immunity" math going around. *BUT* that may just be because option 1 is an even more horrible and more-or-less unthinkable national and global outcome than we've already got. I mean, fundamentally, if having COVID once doesn't mean you won't get it again [and if your roulette chances on what kind of case you got the second time around are independent of the first], then it would require really-really full lockdown and quarantine for a long enough time that the disease is *fully eradicated* globally, which not every country would buy in to [see: US: freedom to kill people by demanding haircuts!], so other countries would have to go through phases of re-lockdown even after they'd killed it off in their country once, whenever someone snuck across a border with it. (I mean, New Zealand is probably pretty safe as long as they can keep the quarantine up well enough, and Australia may follow suit. But they're fairly tidily isolated in a way that most places... aren't, and they also have decent food sources vs. population on-site. So.)

It does seem to be different from the common cold in terms of seasonality and in terms of type of immune response provoked (or rather, not provoked), so there's that. But yes. That is a good point. But I *really* hope that it's more on the chicken-pox only-a-tiny-fraction-can-get-it-again-and-even-then-the-case-is-mild immunity order rather than ye olde common cold...


KC - here’s what I don’t get. If it’s seasonal - if the virus is affected by heat and humidity- doesn’t that mean the Southern Hemisphere should be safe when it’s cold here? I have a friend who visited Peru and they were hosed off the streets with antiseptic. How can it be a global pandemic when it was summer when it started across half the globe?


Exactly: it isn't behaving properly seasonally. (now, I don't know if MERS or SARS did either, though; it's possible that what we think of as "seasonal" as per the cold doesn't make much of a difference if the bug in question has adequate virulence to spread without the extra advantages that "cold/flu season" gives to these suckers?)(I mean: a two year old sneezing directly in my face gave me a cold in July at least once; it's just we get *fewer* colds in the summer, generally.)

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