Omicron symptoms: not so ominous

Symptoms reported in that article are being tired and sore for a couple days with maybe a slight cough. No loss of smell or taste. If that is the usual course of Omicron, everybody’s getting worked up for nothing.

I don’t know that one individual doctor’s anecdotes are all that useful. The usual course of the disease is mild, so any doctor could have said something similar about any of the variants.

Wow! Fox News actually found a doctor to downplay a Covid strain!

But that’s because they treat everyone in Africa with ivermectin, doncha know? Marjorie Taylor Greene tweeted about it!

Yeah, well, I sorta had that with the original covid-19, but that doesn’t mean it’s to be taken lightly. Also, is this doctor-speak “tired and sore”? Like the way they sometimes say “you may feel some discomfort” just before subjecting you to something the Spanish Inquisition might think twice about?

(Bless my surgeon who said “I’m sorry. This will hurt but I have to cause you this pain to fix the problem”. THANK YOU for being HONEST!)

And finally - this is from Fox News. I view all there pandemic reporting with considerable suspicion unless the facts are confirmed by other outlets as well.

Yes. Africans with parasites that can be targeted by ivermectin. That’s like saying we should treat Africans with flu with hairspray and hair gel because Americans use that and they’re healthy!

Honestly, I have no clue about omnicron at this point - it might in fact be less serious that Mark 1 covid, or delta. I wish it were so. But I’m not a doctor and I’ll wait for actual experts to weigh in. Unlike MTG who seems to think she knows better than anyone.

From another board regarding the chain of information custody from The Telegraph to Fox News to Yahoo:

Original Telegraph article below:

Yeah, i was going to post that same link. The doctor was mostly reporting that she saw a cluster of patients with unusual symptoms for covid. They selectively quoted the bit about her young patients with no comorbidities having a mild presentation, and left out both that the very same doctor is worried about how it might present in older/more vulnerable people, and also that most South Africans are young, so it might take a while before we get much data on older people.

OK, I didn’t realize Fox was militarizing their covid coverage. I think there are some subjects that they still cover straight up, but obviously I was naive to think this was one of them. So sorry for posting this misleading mess.

One thing to notice too, even the FOX news article mentions that the doctor is concerned that higher risks are there still for unvaccinated individuals, of course one needs to read further than the apparent “nothing to see here” spin from the headline.

“What we have to worry about now is that when older, unvaccinated people are infected with the new variant, and if they are not vaccinated, we are going to see many people with a severe [form of the] disease,” Coetzee said.

That’s a bit vague. Monoclonal antibodies actually are an effective treatment for COVID.

Surely it’s too early to say. Lots of people with other Covid variants had mild symptoms too. Unless they didn’t.

(However, I agree reflexive closing of borders is premature, not that helpful and does not foster sharing information or needed vaccines. A bad precedent, we must do more to quickly vaccinate the world.)

The border closing is useless - when the initial reports were that it was found in South Africa AND Israel and (I think?) Hong Kong it was clear omnicron had ALREADY spread and was probably everywhere already.

This is silly.
For a doctor to say that young, healthy people had only mild symptoms is just expected; that’s true of the majority of people infected with earlier versions of Covid.

The big worry about this variant is the increased transmissibility – making it much easier to spread to lots of people.

I like the chain of custody phrase here.

But the original Telegraph article isn’t so good either. It gives a superficial feeling that you’ve learning something about omicron when you have learned hardly anything.
It’s just a guess right now whether this variant is something to get depressed about.

The point of a border closure is not to contain the strain, but to limit its spread, and in that respect it may still be quite useful.

Like, there are almost certainly cases in most major countries at this point, but (considering the US for example) there really is a difference between having a few dozen cases today, which will turn into a few hundred in a few weeks and a few thousand a few weeks after that vs letting unrestricted air travel continue and ending up with a few thousand a week from now.

A travel ban might get us through Christmas with very low community spread, where the lack of it might mean that Christmas is a huge super-spreader event everywhere. It might mean that we get another month or two for vaccine variant studies to make progress before hospitals are again inundated. Etc. Border closings can buy you time.

Am I allowed to follow-up on that after @Aspenglow 's mod-note? I’m not trying to dig into the politics of her tweet, but I am curious factually what it refers to. Have people been denied monoclonal antibodies for a reason other than ‘not enough to go around, so we’re triaging’? Is she referring to some pre-EUA time? Or something else?

We recognize discussions around COVID, its variants and treatments are fraught with politics and so are almost impossible to discuss without invoking them. But we also want QZ to be a fact-based forum.

Probably the easiest thing to do is to move this thread to P&E, and then discussions about the politics infesting COVID variants and treatments can carry on worry free and unabated.

I’m rescinding and deleting the Modnote I made earlier on this post. I should have moved the thread to P&E in the first place. My mistake.

Probably utter confusion at the idea that indeed there may be such an actual reason not everyone can access some treatment, as opposed to it being capriciously denied.

Realizing that Raw Story is not exactly an elite news site, statements like this one are not helpful:

“Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) urged her followers to sue doctors to force them to prescribe ivermectin – a deworming paste – for the treatment of Covid-19”

Ivermectin is a useful human drug prescribed in tablet form for certain parasitic infections, but has not been shown to be effective against Covid-19. We can laugh (or groan) about credulous ninnies going down to Tractor Supply for horse deworming formula, but describing ivermectin solely as a veterinary paste is stupid.