2023-03-09 General

I feel like I haven’t done as much research this week, but I’m just flat too tired today to do more. I will probably make tomorrow’s “tiny” posting beefier.

There’s also supposed to be a press conference tomorrow; I plan to watch that and report on it.


Per this Statement, NACI recommends that vulnerable people get boosters in the spring. Or, to flip it, you don’t get a booster in the spring unless you are vulnerable, belonging to one of these categories:

  • Over 65,
  • living in a nursing home, or
  • immunocompromised.

As near as I could tell, diabetic people are not covered by this recommendation. That seems like an oversight to me, maybe I missed something in the fine print. There also aren’t lower age requirements for indigenous people that I saw.

If you meet the criteria, you can get a booster as soon as you pass six months past your previous shot.

I believe that if you have gotten fewer than two boosters, you can get another shot regardless of your age.

Did your COVID-19 vaccination kick your ass? Maybe that’s good! This paper from USA says that it found a correlation with how bad the symptoms were and how sustained the antibody response was.

This article reports that the “circular hockey hub” setup — where the patient stays in one place in a circle of chairs and the various people (information gatherer, screener, vaccinator) come to them — is more efficient than one where the patient moves or even where the patients stay in one place in a grid of chairs: by a LOT. The circular hockey hub let vaccinators do 50 injections per hour, vs. 13 doses per hour for a more traditional setup.

Mitigation Measures

This paper from the USA says that about a quarter of parents lied about COVID-19 in some way concerning their child/children or otherwise did not adhere to mitigation measures. This included saying the kid did not have COVID-19, saying that the kid had been vaccinated, letting the kid break quarantine rules, etc.

This article says that a fair number of people are still using the federal ArriveCan app for what started out as its secondary purpose: filing customs forms.


Great news! This preprint from the USA found that patients who took metaformin (a type 2 diabetes drug that is really safe and really cheap) early in a COVID-19 infection were 42% less likely to get Long COVID! The average that the patients started taking the six day treatment after symptoms was 5 days; those who started within 4 days had an even lower chance of getting Long COVID – 63%!

They also looked at fluvoxamine and ivermectin in this study, and those didn’t do any better than placebo. They did find that unvaccinated people were about twice as likely to get Long COVID as vaccinated people (14% vs. 7%).

This paper says that people who had COVID-19 were at much higher risk in the year after their infection for a variety of things than people who never had COVID-19:

  • 2.35x risk of cardiac arrhythmias;
  • 3.64x risk of pulmonary embolism;
  • 1.78x risk of coronary artery disease;
  • 1.97x risk of heart failure;
  • 1.94x risk of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease;
  • 1.95x risk of asthma.

In addition, people who had COVID-19 infections were 1.5 times as likely to die in the year following infection.

This paper from the USA found that people who had COVID-19 infections were at a higher risk over the course of the next year for a ton of different gastrointestinal issues than people who never had COVID-19. Very broadly speaking, the risks were generally sort of between 1.5x and 2x, and the risk was higher the worse their original infection was.

This warmed-over press release says that ibudilast has been approved for inclusion in the RECLAIM study. Digging around a little, the RECLAIM study in Canada looks really cool: they are going to treat ~1000 long haulers with three different drugs (plus a placebo arm) and see how it goes. (I’m not sure what the other two drugs are, figuring out which drugs to test was part of the planned study.)

This press release from the Government of Canada says that they are investing $20M on “a pan-Canadian Post COVID-19 Condition Research Network called Long COVID Web” and another $9M to McMaster to develop clinical practice guidelines. That’s a nice start.


Buried deep in this article about COVID-19 hanging around and mutating in the body for a long time, there was a mention that there can be different mutations in different parts of the body. For example, in one patient, the viruses in the thalamus and hypothalamus were different! 🤯 (I found this paper from Israel from June 2022 which found different strains in different places in the body.)

This paper from Italy says that COVID-19 fucks with your DNA. I don’t have enough background to understand what the implications of this are, but I don’t see how it could possibly be good.

I am not a biologist, but I think the fuckage that the paper reports is damage to cell self-repair and things like that, not making you grow a tail or shut down one of your lungs.

Meanwhile, this paper from the USA from February says that SARS-CoV-2 can reverse-transcriptease into your DNA. NB: I haven’t heard a lot of chatter about it, and “can” slide into yourself doesn’t mean “is likely to”. I’m not sure how much to trust this article.


This paper from Spain (from January 2023) and this paper from Canada say that, in a small trials, intranasal photodynamic therapy (PDT) sped up the average recovery time for COVID-19 patients. This press release from Ottawa says that PDT sped up the average recovery time for spinal surgery patients.

Apparently the way PDT works is that the patients sniffs methylene blue, then the doctors stick a wand up the nose and zap it with read light. This sterilizes pathogens in the nose.

It isn’t completely obvious to me why sterilizing the nose should reduce the amount of time people have COVID-19, but there are now multiple different studies showing that multiple different ways of getting crud out of the nose is highly beneficial, including plain old saline rinses, nitric oxide nasal spray, astodrimer sodium nasal spray, and now PDT. (See my Treatments page for citations.) Maybe COVID-19 isn’t as good/fast at spreading to the rest of the body as I had assumed it was? So if you kill it in the nose in the first few days, then you’re golden?

Side Effects

This article says that, according to a survey, Canadians think that there is more violence than pre-pandemic.

Recommended Reading

This article talks about what’s happening in various places to improve ventilation. (I think I want to move to Belgium.)

This blog post summarizes recent research that shows ~2x risk of various bad things post-COVID-19 infection.

This blog post by the same (knowledgeable) person observes that we don’t see another scariant on the horizon at the moment. Note that Omicron came on very fast and very hard, so it’s always possible that a new scariant will pop up and take over fast, but it’s not a given.