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Lung scans show COVID-19 can leave severe damage, even in those who didn’t have symptoms

Florida, Jan 25: A USF doctor is putting out a warning about COVID-19 and your lungs. The X-rays and scans she’s seeing show worse damage post-COVID-19 than in lungs of people who have smoked for years.

The damage is seen even in some patients who never saw a symptom of COVID-19.“The lung when it’s scarred is scarred, period,” said Dr. Gaetane Michaud, a pulmonologist with USF.

When the pandemic first started in March, she was on the frontline in New York City. She’s since reviewed hundreds of X-rays and scans of the post-COVID-19 lung.

Dr. Michaud shows a scan of a pair of healthy lungs. They are full of air that looks black. She then shows a scan of a smoker’s lungs with emphysema damaging the air sacs. Then, she shows a scan of post-COVID lungs.

The lungs are hazy and filled with white. That white out is heavy scarring, and unlike other organs, the lungs do not regenerate.“You have like, it’s almost like a bunch of concrete around a certain area, so nothing can get past that concrete so the oxygen can’t get into the body because those air sacs are so scarred around them that the oxygen can’t get through,” she explained.

She says while the inflammation can get better, that scarring that’s left behind is yours for life. Dr. Michaud reports that in nearly all those scans and X-rays she’s reviewed, she’s seen damage to the lungs, even if the patient had barely any symptoms or none at all related to the lungs.

“You know, what’s really stunning?” she asked. “When you see patients that had very few symptoms, and then they come in with these scarred lungs.”

In the worst cases, their only chance for survival is a lung transplant. But there is good news. Unlike her time in New York, doctors have since learned more about the virus and the best therapies to lessen the damage’s severity.

At the beginning, doctors would quickly put a patient who was struggling to breathe on a ventilator. They later discovered ventilators could add to the damage in the lungs.

“It looks a lot like an end-stage lung disease,” she said while looking at scans of COVID-19-lungs.

The seriousness of COVID-19 to the lungs is comparable to smoking, but there’s one big difference — time.

“We’re not talking over decades, we’re talking over days to weeks we’re seeing these horrible changes in the lungs, some are unrecoverable,” she said.

She suggests if you’ve ever had COVID-19, with or without symptoms, talk to your doctor to see if a scan of your lungs is right for you.

This story originally reported by Isabel Rosales on

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Serosurvey would determine impact of possible 3rd Covid wave on children: DAK

(Asian News Hub) – Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK) on Saturday said serosurvey of pediatric population in the valley would determine the impact of possible third Covid-19 wave on children.

Serosurvey of children will give us a fair estimate of their vulnerability in predicted third wave,” said DAK President and influenza expert Dr Nisar ul Hassan.

“Serosurvey involves testing blood samples of individuals for antibodies that are developed after an infection,” he said.

“This will give us an idea about the percentage of pediatric population who might have developed natural immunity.”

Dr Hassan said recently, a serosurvey of general population including children aged 7 to 17 years has been completed in Kashmir, the results of which are awaited.  The sample size per district in the age group 7 to 11 was 40 and it was 80 in 12-17 age group.

“The survey needs to be extended to the age group of 0 to 6 years and the sample size per district should be 500 to 1000 to get a clearer picture of the actual percentage of children who have developed immunity against Covid-19,” he said.

Dr Hassan said there are speculations that children would be affected more than adults in possible third wave as this is the population group in which there is no vaccine yet.

“However, various serosurveys have dismissed the claim that the next wave will be affecting children exclusively,” he said.

“A pediatric serological study conducted by AIIMS, New Delhi at five different sites found that 55.7 percent children had developed antibodies,” DAK President said.

“The study found that seroprevalence of children and adults in the same regions were almost similar.”

“Another study conducted by PGI Chandigarh revealed that 69 percent of children had antibodies against Covid-19,” he said.

“These children had remained either asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic during the infection.”

“The data of the two surveys prove that children have acquired natural immunity against the virus and it is highly unlikely that the third wave will affect children more than adults,” said Dr Nisar.

“This is a big relief. Because the apprehensions expressed by several health experts about the third wave primarily targeting children had left people worried,” he said.

“But, we can’t derive conclusions on the data from other regions. We need to have our own data based on which decisions can be made ahead of the feared third wave,” he added.

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Israel reports Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness against infection down to 40%

(Asian News Hub) – The Health Ministry said Thursday that the effectiveness of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in preventing infection and mild symptoms has dropped to 40%, according to new data collected over the past month as the delta variant spreads in Israel.

In a televised address, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett meanwhile called on Israelis who haven’t been vaccinated to do so as soon as possible.

“The Israeli government is investing billions so that there is a vaccine available in every location in the country, and there are still a million Israelis who simply refuse to be vaccinated,” he said. “The vaccine refusers are endangering their health, their surroundings and all Israeli citizens. If a million Israelis continue to be unvaccinated, this will force the others to shut themselves in at home.”

The effectiveness of the vaccine in preventing hospitalizations and severe symptoms stands at 88% and 91%, respectively, the ministry said.

With inputs from Haaretz

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Scientists discover more than 30 viruses frozen in ice, most never seen before

(Asian News Hub) – A group of scientists discovered ancient viruses frozen in two ice samples taken from the Tibetan Plateau in China, and most of them are unlike anything ever seen before.

The findings, published Wednesday in the journal Microbiome, came from ice cores taken in 2015 that scientists said began to freeze at least 14,400 years ago.

“These glaciers were formed gradually, and along with dust and gases, many, many viruses were also deposited in that ice,” Zhi-Ping Zhong, lead author and researcher at the Ohio State University Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center, said in a statement. “The glaciers in western China are not well-studied, and our goal is to use this information to reflect past environments. And viruses are a part of those environments.”

When researchers analyzed the ice, they found genetic codes for 33 viruses. Of the 33, genetic codes for four of them showed they are part of virus families that typically infect bacteria. Up to 28 were novel, meaning they had never before been identified.

The group said it doesn’t believe the viruses originated from animals or humans but came from the soil or plants. The scientists said roughly half of them survived because of the ice.

“These are viruses that would have thrived in extreme environments,” said Matthew Sullivan, co-author of the study and director of Ohio State’s Center of Microbiome Science.

“These viruses have signatures of genes that help them infect cells in cold environments – just surreal genetic signatures for how a virus is able to survive in extreme conditions.”

Sullivan said the technology used to study microbes and viruses inside the ice would lead to looking for similar genetic sequences in other extreme ice environments, possibly on Mars.

Senior author of the study Lonnie Thompson said the discovery of the viruses in glaciers of ice will help researchers understand how they respond to climate change.

“We know very little about viruses and microbes in these extreme environments and what is actually there,” Thompson said. 

“The documentation and understanding of that is extremely important.”


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