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Covid-19 Outbreak of new SARS-like coronavirus (Covid-19)

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cduggles

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This is a pretty graphic article, but it’s an interesting perspective to hear from someone dealing with the bodies of people who died from COVID. The fact that he’s seeing younger people is telling.
The septic saliva and gangrenous tissue is just nasty though.

Texas Embalmer Shares Nightmare COVID Experiences: ‘Unlike Anything I’ve Seen Before’​

Patrick Huey contacted HuffPost after reading a story about a Florida-based ICU doctor who broke down on CNN while being interviewed about patients dying of COVID-19. The Texas-based funeral professional, who has worked as an embalmer for the past 30 years and won the South Central Texas Funeral Directors Association’s first-ever Embalmer of the Year award in 2019, offered to share his own harrowing COVID-related experiences, as well as the toll working in the funeral industry during the pandemic is taking on him and his colleagues.
His account below has been lightly edited for clarity.

When COVID first started, we really didn’t know a whole lot about how it was spread ― or, really, much else. There just wasn’t a lot of information out there. A lot of the states were recommending or even mandating not embalming bodies because so much was unknown at the time regarding how contagious COVID was, how it was spread, the fatality rate, and what chemicals effectively killed it.
As time went by, we found that the bodies could be embalmed. That’s our preference if you have to store people for any length of time. Our opinion is that it’s much, much safer if the body has been embalmed and bathed, and then we can store them without having to utilize refrigeration.
It wasn’t until about late November or early December of last year when the surge really hit us in Texas, and then it was just awful. Just awful. We were pulling 22- and 36-hour shifts, and we were short-handed to begin with. We went like that until about the middle of March. At that point about 65%, or maybe a little less, of the bodies we were receiving had COVID.
The death rate in general over the past few years has been unprecedented. The baby boomer generation has begun to die, and we are seeing more bodies than ever before. Add COVID to that and we’re reaching a breaking point.
We get bodies out of ICU regularly, but not in the condition that these COVID bodies are in.
We’ve just had to buckle down and do the best that we can. The internet has been a blessing because it allows all of us embalmers to communicate and find out what issues everyone is having because so much of this has been unlike anything we’ve seen before. We get bodies out of ICU regularly, but not in the condition that these COVID bodies are in. They’re tremendously swollen. If they’ve been on a ventilator, that often completely runs down their immune system. It also opens them up to a lot of sepsis and secondary infections that tend to hang around hospitals, like penicillin-resistant staph infections.
These folks were so swollen they were completely unrecognizable. We were also getting sent a lot of people who had died from COVID in nursing homes back at that time, and many of them had not been dead very long at all. Generally when we embalm, we utilize a major artery to inject the embalming fluid and we use its adjoining vein for drainage. The blood tends to settle out because it’s no longer flowing and it’ll gravitate to the dependent part of the body. The longer a body sits, the more blood clots that they develop. I was having people that had only been dead for a few hours and there were major clotting issues. The clots were the size of pancakes ― you never, never see those with someone who didn’t die of COVID.
I’ve been doing this for 30 years and pretty much everywhere I’ve worked has been medium to high volume. I’m not one of those embalmers that works at a place that just does 50 or 60 bodies a year. So I’ve done this long enough and I’ve seen enough that I would know when something different pops up. COVID is unlike anything I’ve seen before.
Many of the people who were in the ICU were on ventilators, and they put adhesive patches on their cheeks. They can easily become septic and they drip that septic saliva on the sides of their faces and the skin in that area gets infected. We were literally receiving bodies with huge lesions on their cheeks or [patches that had gone] gangrene. The sad part is the families of these people, at that point, hadn’t been allowed to see their loved ones during the several weeks that they were in the ICU. So the body comes out in an almost unrecognizable condition, and then you have to explain to their family that their loved one doesn’t look anything like what they should.
Despite the fact that I specialize in postmortem reconstruction ― accidents, trauma, stuff like that ― when the bodies are that swollen, there is very little I can do to eliminate that. And for a lot of these families, it’s just a tremendous shock. I’ve had husbands and wives die within days of each other. I’ve seen entire families wiped out. It’s horrible.
With this current surge from [the delta variant], I notice we’re not getting bodies out of the nursing homes like we were the last time, most likely due to the fact that most of these old nursing home patients have been vaccinated. Right now the bodies I’m seeing are ranging from the late 20s to the elderly. We’ve had quite a few bodies in their mid-to-late 30s, 40s, 50s. I’ve also noticed that with delta, for the most part, these people were not spending nearly as much time in the ICU before they die. Sadly, that’s been to our benefit because they’re not in as bad of a condition as they were with the last surge.
We’re just doing what we can, but we’re constantly worried about our own safety while working. At my facility, we’re wearing N95 masks because the filtration is so much better and it makes it a good positive seal on your face. I’ve got a mask with a respirator that uses the P100 multivapor cartridges. Aside from that, we’re wearing our standard personal protective equipment and taking extra precautions ― keep our faces covered and doing whatever we can to keep our risks as low as we possibly can. As far as handling the body goes, if you roll the body, if you put pressure on the chest, there’s the chance of expelling air from the lungs.
After we get done embalming a body, we pack the nasal passages and everything else and once it’s bathed well and preserved well, to me, it’s as safe as it can possibly be and should not pose a risk to the families or anyone else who comes in contact with it. I really wish we were embalming them all, but we just don’t have the manpower right now. As far as licensed embalmers, there’s a definitely a big shortage, especially down here in Texas.
Seeing so many of these people who have passed away who shouldn’t have died in the first place and the husbands and wives passing within days of each other ― on top of just the mass volume ― is a lot to deal with. Although we try to distance ourselves professionally as much as possible while doing our jobs, it wears on us. There are a lot of us that definitely have some PTSD ― or just traumatic stress. It’s really, really hard.
My wife and I don’t get to see much of each other. I’ve got two kids who just started college, and they don’t get to see nearly as much of me as they would like to. And it’s very difficult. Right now shifts start at 8 a.m. and we are currently working 19 to 20 hours the first day of our two-day shifts. Then we’re back up after sleeping a few hours, and we don’t sleep that second night of work. Then I go home and either work other places in my town ― I live in East Texas and I drive to central Texas for work and, even when I’m home, I often help out at the local funeral home here and other places are calling for help ― or, if I am lucky, I will sleep 30 hours straight. My downfall or failing has been the inability to tell people “no” when they call for help.
I’d say 85% of the people who are coming in right now passed from COVID. A lot of them are coming from the ICU. It’s not uncommon to get bodies from there, but what is uncommon is to get seven or eight or 10 bodies a day.
It’s so bad that we have had to get one of those large government FEMA refrigerated trailers. We’ve never had that before. Our facility has the ability to hold somewhere around 90 or 100 bodies in the walk-in refrigerator in our building, and another smaller one in the garage will hold another 18 or so bodies. And we’re full! If it comes down to it and we completely run out of refrigeration space, we will wind up having to embalm everybody that comes in that we can’t put into refrigeration. Basically, if we can’t get a body into refrigeration or buried within 24 hours, then we have to embalm, and there are only so many people who are qualified to do that.
Although we try to distance ourselves professionally as much as possible while doing our jobs, it wears on us. There are a lot of us that definitely have some PTSD ― or just traumatic stress. It’s really, really hard.
I don’t know how much longer I can keep working this way. I’ll never throw my hands up and just say “screw this!” If the good Lord calls me home and I drop dead at the embalming table, then I guess that’ll make for a day off.
We are losing staff in places. A lot of new folks are graduating from mortuary school. They’re starting to work and are immediately slammed with COVID cases and they can’t handle it and and they wind up getting out. We’ve had a lot of funeral professionals who have gotten COVID, and there have been several I know of who have died from it.
The smaller, independent funeral homes, when they’re dealing with COVID, the next thing you know, their entire staff has it. And they pretty much have to take the phone off the hook, lock doors and shut down because they don’t have anybody to run the place. So, we’ve got a lot of embalmers who are traveling around from place to place, just trying to help out everybody who has shortages ― just to keep the doors open and keep serving the public.
I’m on Facebook and whatever occasionally, but I don’t post a lot about my job and about what I do, because it’s just my job and I just do it. [The embalmers] are just doing the best that we can, and I wish that people would just do the best that they can to stay safe. I want everyone to take this seriously and to remember that the repercussions of their actions run downhill, and we funeral professionals are down near the bottom of that hill.
Lastly, I’ll just say I wish this would quit being such a political thing. People want to blame one party or the other, and I don’t know what the answer is. I do know that the studies have shown the vaccination works and I wish more people would get it. And sometimes we have to have our freedoms infringed upon just a little bit for the betterment of the entire population. We’re just trying to do our part ― and we wish everyone else would do the same.
 

Asclepius

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...can we just take a minute to appreciate this.

"The Texas-based funeral professional, who has worked as an embalmer for the past 30 years and won the South Central Texas Funeral Directors Association’s first-ever Embalmer of the Year award in 2019"
😑

wait....

:cheer:
 

6am-64-14m

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I quit watching news and prefer cartoons... more entertaining, less lies "fake truth" l and more common seance, imo.
All news ifs fake imo unless one knows something or experienced the subject matter in person.
Just posting here i guess cause it really may not make any rael differences on way or the other.

Fight the powerless! ha

We can win.... but....
 

6am-64-14m

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nope got my own fantasy land and it is a whole lot less bs and sress. ;)

maybe i misunersood. wanna shoot again?
one
 

Yourbaker

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The mystery of how people have or gain COVID immunity is hopefully beginning to unravel.

The people with hidden immunity against Covid-19


Re-reading this article from just over a year ago brought back a lot of the initial information that has been sidelined due to a lack of current populararity.

The number of individuals who were already equipped with the right T-cell to fight covid being between 40 and 60% of the population seems about right. Ive now seen covid spread in a kitchen (close working staff where masks provide little beyond discomfort) some people are just resilient or already immune.

I realize a lot of you are writting about your fears and panics and like to find a scape goat to blame but you have a huge choice of vaccines now to take.

Can we please stop trying to blame people who choose not to vaccinate with your fears. If they're naturally immune they arent a worry to you and if they arent covid can kill them for you. No need to attack, just breath and think past the last news real you swallowed.
 

cduggles

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So ICU beds are in short supply and in Idaho, I think it is, they’ve started to ration care (triage who is likeliest to survive).

I was listening to a lecture about triage during COVID and it was very interesting because there was an ethical discussion about how to prioritize ICU beds. Some doctors were saying base it on who is likeliest to survive, such as least amount of comorbidities, and then most of them agreed that kids come first, and then adults with kids get priority over adults without kids. Most of them didn’t believe COVID vaccination status should matter like in a moral way, but should be a factor because vaccinated people have a higher chance of surviving a severe case of COVID (by a factor of 10, if you believe the CDC).
But anyway, a maternal and fetal specialist chimed in (they take care of high risk pregnancies) and they actually prioritized non-vaccinated pregnant women for admission over vaccinated because they could more quickly take a turn for the worse and obviously oxygen depletion is a problem for the fetus. The rest was pretty graphic.

I’m not trying to get a reaction out of anyone, it was just an interesting point that pregnant women are triaged differently, at least at this one hospital although other doctors seemed to agree.

And also it’s not a good thing for anyone who needs an ER or hospital that COVID is raging.
 

S.J.B.

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Here's some interesting data from Alberta, Canada comparing rates of hospitalization, ICU admission, and death from COVID between vaccinated and unvaccinated patients. An unvaccinated 30- to 39-year-old has an equal chance of being hospitalized as a vaccinated 80-plus-year-old. The difference is not quite as stark when it comes to deaths: an unvaccinated 50- to 59-year-old has a significantly lower chance of dying than a vaccinated 80-plus-year-old, but an unvaccinated 60- to 69-year-old has a much higher chance of dying than a vaccinated 80-plus-year-old.
 

AutoTripper

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Well I still have naturally acquired upholding immunity to this thing 12 months on. My mum too.

And my immune system is say, 15-20% normally (as in, not fully which doesn't happen for anybody IMO) functional at best.

Yet I go about the world, firstly on my heart, the FEAR of Covid for myself personally does not exist. No personal fear. No need for it.

With my compromised immunity, and the officialy right, most- INFECTIOUS specifically pathogen in the record books, to not see, feel or suspect, be diagnosed with a trace of Covid 12 months after the one single contraction of whatever Covid actually is becausecI don't believe it is a biological virus at all, but regardless, is miraculous under normal circumstances.

This is genuine first hand testimony too.

The mind indoctrinating, stigma prejudice driving MSM Govt oriented spiel is so overdriven, an understatement too.

Just, how I see it. I'm not alone.

Again I hope and pray as always for it, If we are able to still have this discussion in 12 months, it will be surely a lot more straightforward, clear cut, maybe more interesting too, and no doubt boring as hell still lol.

I'm not referring to Covid directly, nor any related hot topic operations here.

As much as it doesn't seem like it, there are bigger things than Covid in life, on the horizon.

Trump was yesterday's news. Covid is today's.

What, is tomorrow's?
 

cduggles

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Apparently COVID may impair sexual performance in men. Apparently, the testes are a great place for a virus to make a home.

COVID-19 may impair men’s sexual performance

Men may be six times more likely to develop brief or long-term erectile dysfunction after contracting the virus. The vaccine can prevent this.​

Among the list of ailments, mounting evidence suggests that COVID-19 may sabotage men’s sexual health. “We found that men who hadn’t previously had these issues developed pretty severe erectile dysfunction after COVID-19 infection,” Ramasamy says.

Men may be six times more likely to develop brief or long-term erectile dysfunction after contracting the virus, according to research published in March. Other studies have documented a litany of post-infection health issues that impact sex, either independently or in concert: inability to have or maintain an erection, damage to the testes, testicular painor swelling, inability to achieve orgasm, low testosterone levels, and mental health issues.

The science stands in stark contrast to anti-vaccine misinformation spreading online—including a now infamous tweet from rapper Nicki Minaj—claiming that COVID-19 vaccines cause swollen testicles and impotence. To date, no studies support that claim.

“It’s important for people to understand that COVID vaccination doesn't affect erectile function,” Ramasamy says. “The virus can have significant adverse long-term effects, and the vaccine is safe.”

Tracking the virus in tissues​

Men most at risk for severe COVID-19—older men or those with hypertension, obesity, diabetes, and heart disease—are already at high risk for sexual dysfunction. These conditions affect their hormones, muscles, blood vessels, and more. However, much younger men have also reported sexual health issues. When it comes to figuring out the short-term and chronic aftereffects of this new virus, “we’re still in the tracking and trends phase,” says Ryan Berglund, a urologist at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, and that includes understanding its effects on men’s sexual and reproductive health.

To find out if the virus was indeed invading men’s reproductive organs, Ramasamy and his team performed biopsies on six men ages 20 to 87 who had succumbed to COVID-19. When they examined these tissue samples under an electron microscope, they discovered virus particles lurking in one man’s testicles. Half of the men also had poor sperm quality, backing up data from other small postmortem studiesand raising questions about the disease’s impact on fertility.

If the virus was in the testes, Ramasamy wondered if was also present in the penis. The team investigated by studying two men who became impotent after having the virus. One of them had experienced mild symptoms; the other had been hospitalized. Convinced they would never have a natural erection again, they each came to the clinic to see if they might be candidates for penile implant surgery.

The virus was indeed present in their penis tissue, which was shocking, Ramasamy says, given the time frame: It had been up to eight months since the men were first infected. The doctors also found damage to the lining of the organ’s tiny blood vessels.

Blood and bone​

A known coronavirus impact, damage to the endothelial cells that line the blood vessels, is the most likely culprit for poor sexual performance. While some mammals have a bone in their penises, erections in humans rely on blood flow. Arteries must open and veins must contract, almost like a canal lock system. Impaired, narrowed blood vessels won’t allow spongy tissue to inflate with blood or hold that blood to maintain an erection.

Without enough blood, cells are oxygen-deprived, tissues become inflamed, and vessels lose elasticity, says Emmanuele A. Jannini, professor of endocrinology and medical sexology at Italy’s University of Rome Tor Vergata. “No oxygen, no sex,” he says.

He notes that COVID-19 also seems to lower amounts of an enzyme—endothelial nitric oxide synthase—that helps dilate blood vessels and engorge the penis. For long-haulers, lung or heart damage may compound the problem by altering blood circulation and oxygen levels in the blood and tissues.

Early in the pandemic, Jannini’s team launched an online survey that gathered information on sexually active Italian men who’d had the virus. This was the study that revealed the six-fold higher risk of erectile dysfunction post-COVID-19 infection. How long symptoms will last remains unknown, Jannini says.

“Since the penis is actually one of the most vascular organs in the body, we were not surprised that erectile dysfunction was more common in men with long COVID,” Ramasamy says.

And in July, the Patient-Led Research Collaborative, a group of researchers who themselves have long COVID, published the most comprehensive information to date. They documented 203 symptoms in 10 organ systems, amassed from an online survey of some 6,500 people from countries across the globe. The results included sexual health problems.

About 18 percent of men reported sexual dysfunction; some 13 percent experienced pain in their testicles; 8 percent noted other sex organ issues; and about 4 percent of men had a decrease in the size of their penis or testicles.

A viral hideout​

The testicles are a perfect hideout for viruses. Like the eyes and central nervous system, they are immunologically privileged sites. In these places, viruses including Ebola, mumps, and Zika can remain in tissues, evading the immune system even after the invader has been cleared from other parts of the body.

One study speculated that the testicles might therefore serve as a reservoir for the virus that causes COVID-19. This may explain why 11 percent of men hospitalized with COVID-19 suffered testicular pain. Infection of the organ’s Leydig cells, which produce testosterone, may also explain long haulers’ lowered levels of the male sex hormone. That alone can cause lagging libido and desire. Jannini notes another feedback loop: Testosterone production drops when men aren’t having sex.

State of mind also plays a role in intimacy, Berglund says, “which is partially dependent on our psychological state.” The pandemic has heavily impacted overall mental health for long haulers. Many suffer from PTSD, anxiety, or depression. The psychological effects of COVID-19 on sexual health will ultimately be the most challenging to tease out, Berglund says.

He adds that simply being sick can kill desire. “If you’re struggling to breathe or chronically ill, you’re probably less interested in sex,” he says. That may be compounded by fatigue, one of the most common symptoms, and loss of smell, since scent sparks arousal.

Sex and the vaccine​

More studies are needed to understand what the virus actually does to men’s reproductive health. Researchers are working to understand the mechanisms of what is still a relatively new disease. Ramasamy’s team is investigating how this virus evades the immune system and lodges in cells, including in the testes and penis. “If it’s going dormant, will it get reactivated again?” he asks “Does it continue to cause damage? Or is it a one-time insult?”

Congress has awarded $1.15 billion to the U.S. National Institutes of Health for its RECOVERprogram, which will study the constellation of long haul COVID-19 symptoms over the next four years. Many hope that it will provide much-needed answers – and treatments for those who still suffer.

And despite the misinformation spreading on social media, research continues to counter the notion that vaccines impact fertility. A June study, for instance, found no link between mRNA vaccines and reduced sperm count.

“The plausible relationship between COVID-19 and erectile dysfunction is one more reason for the unvaccinated to get their shots,” Jannini notes. “If they want to have sex, better to get the vaccine.”
 
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