Friday 15 May 2020

Saturday 9 May 2020

A short break to Reality

As opposed to a short break from Reality.

Recently, I've tried to make this blog an information source for medical practitioners, giving the latest and greatest info about COVID-19. While the politics is alternately interesting and infuriating, it's not really relevant to those on the front line.

I need a break though, where I stand back and try to see the Big Picture.

Let's see, I'm in a Universe where Ronald Reagan became President - then won the Cold War. Everyone won that one in fact. Between 1993 and 2001 things looked bright.

In 2001 my son was born, and the odds of that were thought to be 100:1 against. From what we know now, add a couple more zeroes to that, truly incalculable.

I changed sex in 2005 of course. (Yes I know, superficial,  not a "true" change as is found in Clownfish and other species, but the secondary sex characteristics changed completely, the primary partially , so close enough for most purposes)

2016 - I prefer not to think about, for obvious reasons.

2019 Bushfires that did as much damage as a Multimegaton Thermouclear attack, only with bad aim and no ionising radiation. Global Warming at work.

2020 A plague year. One that is on the very low end of the scale, future ones will likely be worse if we "get back to normal".

I'm not shellshocked, but I feel as if I'm in a very low order of probability part of the Multiverse, sometimes good, sometimes bad, never boring. It helps to gain some perspective by looking at the stars, or reminding myself that I think the Many Worlds interpretation of Quantum Mechanics is the most likely. I just happen to inhabit one a few Standard Deviations away from peak probability.

Now back to our usual programming.

Friday 1 May 2020

1 in 28

There is better than a 9 chance in 10 that treatment with Remdesivir will save the life of 1 in 30 patients treated with it. A game changer it's not.

Unless you are that 1 in 30, and with ~60,000 deaths in ~1,000,000 confirmed cases, that would be 2,000 lives saved. Probably. 9 in 10 chance it's not coincidence.

While it's no magic bullet, with obvious dramatic beneficial effects, there is currently no good evidence that it has any dramatic deleterious effect. The question is, if you give it to a million patients, will it kill more or less than 2,000? Previous safety tests strongly suggest a lot fewer.