bola is a frightening disease, but it isn’t very easy to be infected. It has crossed the pond, but it won’t go very far even with minor outbreaks. There won’t be anything like what’s happening in West Africa because the afflicted nations have poor overall infrastructure and you can’t be infected just by being in the same room, breathing the same air.
The symptoms appear to be a wee over-hyped and this may derive from a book called “The Hot Zone” a “non-fiction” thriller describing the origins of ebola and marburg among other viral hemorrhagic fevers. As an epidemiologist says:
“First–the description of symptoms.Preston himself admits that these were exaggerated. Over and over, he uses words like “dissolving,” “liquefy,” “bleeding out” to describe patient pathology. (If I had been playing a drinking game while reading and did a shot every time Preston uses “liquefy” in the book, I’d be dead right now).”
Following the link in the above quote, we find the author of the “non-fiction” work saying:
“In the original “Hot Zone,” I have a description of a nurse weeping tears of blood. That almost certainly didn’t happen. When a person has Ebola, the eyes can turn brilliant red from blood vessels leaking and blood oozing out of the eyelid. That’s horrifying, but it’s not someone with tears of blood running down their face.”
And that’s all that is mentioned but, if you follow the link to the epidemiologist she shows Preston, via extensive quotes from the best seller, to be very overly melodramatic:
“And I didn’t even get to what Preston says about Ebola and testicles. Or pregnant women. Seriously, there’s pages upon pages upon pages of this stuff.”
Despite Preston’s desire to correct the errors, it seems he can’t resist (from the earlier link):
“Here’s what’s terrifying about Ebola. Ebola is invisible. It’s a monster without a face. With the science that we have now, we can perceive Ebola as being not one thing but as a swarm, and the swarm is moving through the human population and expanding its numbers. It has the qualities of a monster. It’s the most important character in “The Hot Zone.” It’s the nonhuman other that all human beings are contending with in many different ways.”
That “non-fiction” book has sold over 4 million copies by now. No wonder people are so frightened. So frightened, that the quacks can sink in their talons.
First up, the homeopaths in Australia sent a letter to their PM and Health Minister informing them of a petition to the World Health Organization “urgently requesting” they distribute homeopathic remedies to break the epidemic. Amongst all the lies, what do they prescribe? Hyper diluted snake venom, phosphorus and vitamins. More specifically:
“1. Crotalus Horridus (rattlesnake venom) 2. Bothrops (yellow viper) 3. Lachesis (bushmaster snake) 4. Phosphorus 5. Merc. cor.”
Looking up the first “medicine” we are unsurprised to find a very, very long list of afflictions that can be treated from lockjaw to acne to “cancer of tongue with hemorrhage”. Sweet. Of course, cheek-by-jowl with this list is the purchase button. Here we find $7.75Cdn for 80 pellets of various potencies. Another site recommends 30C as a preventative for nearby Ebola outbreaks. In Canada. With the headline “Bioterrorism and Epidemics: Knowing Homeopathy Can Help Make the World a Less Scary Place.” Less headlines like that would be a good place to start.
Why these particular venoms? Homeopathy is based on “like curing like”. Ebola causes hemorrhaging and so do these snake venoms. Perfect, right? Phosphorus and the last item are there because they make you feel like you have Ebola if they don’t cause liquefaction of your eyes. The other thing aboot homeopathy is the faith required in dilution as it makes the medicine stronger, more powerful and paradoxically, completely safe. Unless you have Ebola.
A 30C dilution translated from homeospeak into chemistry results in a very high dilution, where there would be no chance of any original substance remaining. Considering a 13C dilution is equivalent to 1/3 of 1 drop of snake venom being squeezed into all the water on earth.
Take a glass of juice. Dump it and fill it with water 30 times. That’s 30C. Oh, and shake it 40 times before dumping, that’s the magic act that makes the “medicine” strong like bull. If 30C were to fail you, increase the dosage with 200C pills or one drop of snake venom in a pool of water as large as the visible universe. At least snake-oil salesmen had the decency to include some snake-oil in their lotions, notions and potions.
Next we have Ayurveda, AKA Traditional Indian Medicine. A practitioner of this ancient healing art recommends AUT. Auto Urine Therapy. You see, your immune system breaks down the virus and you piss it out. Drinking your own piss first thing in the morning – this is essential – will cause your gut to pick up these bits of Ebola and start producing anti-bodies like a vaccine. Science!
“We believe in strengthening the soul, mind and body and also in boosting immunity. If a person is strong and has good immunity he or she can withstand any attack. Whatever modern medicine does not have a clinically tested conclusion for; they call it a syndrome, like AIDS. We believe in correcting the system, not managing the symptoms,”
This pissy approach is also endorsed by Tim Bolen a guy known for his quackish ways. The problem is, urine will contain complete virus, not just bits and unfortunately for this “theory”, is broken down and absorbed by the gut before it could provoke an immune response.
“These Ebola virus proteins would be broken down to forms that can’t provoke an immune response before ever getting to the gut’s immune system, given that Peyer’s patches are found in the ileum (more distal small intestine), not in the jejunum, which is where most protein digestion and absorption take place.”
And of course we have prayer. Apparently one of the nurses who recovered in the US thinks that without all the prayers she would have died despite the best efforts of the medical team. The only difference between her and the dead is modern medical care. And her arrogance.