Fwd: Re: [FoRK] avian flu/home grown/PastFutureTense/retraction

Luis Villa luis.villa
Fri Oct 14 12:49:49 PDT 2005


On 10/14/05, Kevin Elliott <k-elliott at wiu.edu> wrote:
> At 14:31 -0400  on  10/14/05, Luis Villa wrote:
> >* the problem that caused the most deaths in 1918 was not poor immune
> >system response; it was an immune system response so overwhelmingly
> >aggressive that while attacking the virus it coincidentally destroyed
> >the lungs. That's why more young adults died than old and children.
>
> Interesting.  Wouldn't life support still allow sustained life in
> this situation?  I assume lung function is compromised but still
> functional.  The problem is an inability for the lungs to pull in
> sufficient Oxygen per breathe.  How would a patient respond to being
> put on Oxygen?
>
> >* in an actual epidemic anything approaching the scale of the one we
> >saw in 1918, only the tiniest percentage will actually recieve any
> >medical care at all. All modern american hospitals run as close to
> >capacity as possible- any unused capacity (aka 'buffer for unusual
> >emergencies') is actively hunted down, because empty beds cost money.
> >If the flu comes again, modern medical treatment won't matter because
> >the vast majority will get ill and die or recover before ever so much
> >as seeing a doctor. (They'll all be dying too, which won't help.)
>
> Strongly disagree.  I simply don't see it going down this way.
> Capacity is easy to create- you throw people who don't HAVE to be
> their out.  You set up tents in the parking lot.  You ration
> doctor/nurse time aggressively.  You bring in outside assistance.

Like I said, go read the book. Your limited imagination is failing to
grasp the magnitude of the problem.

Luis



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