COVID19 update, October 4, 2021: is molnupiravir a game changer?; Accidental intravenous injection and myocarditis; brief Israel update

(1) There have been a number of attempts to repurpose existing antiviral drugs, such as the Tamiflu competitor Avigan (favipiravir, developed in Japan by a subsidiary of FUJI). Eventually, these didn’t pan out.

Until now. Dr. Campbell thinks molnupiravir, developed by Merck, may be a game changer

Summarizing the release from Merck: with interim analysis of their Phase 3 study: patients were recruited among those who tested positive or had mild COVID, and had at least one risk factor. (There is no point in giving an antiviral to somebody with severe COVID, since at that point your enemy #1 is a destructive immune response, no longer the virus.)

Of 385 people who got the drug, 28 required hospitalization and none died.

Of the 377 in the control group who got a placebo, 53 required hospitalization and eight died.

As a result, Merck has stopped the trial so they can give the drug to everybody, and they are preparing an application to the FDA for an Emergency Use Authorization.

Skeptical as I am of “science by press release”, this one just might be the real deal.

(2) Inadvertent intravenous injection. Older nurses and doctors were still taught, when giving an intramuscular injection, to draw back a little on the plunger after sticking in the needle. If the liquid entering the syringe is clear, you can safely inject; if you draw blood, you’ve hit a blood vessel: pull out, change the needle, and jab elsewhere.

They’ve stopped teaching this in nursing school some time ago. Yet Dr. Campbell (a retired nursing school instructor) explains that even when jabbing in the deltoid or the buttocks, this may lead to an inadvertent intravenous injection once every several thousand jabs.

Now could this cause complications? A research team showed that it does happen in mice.

Li, C.; Chen, Y.; Zhao, Y.; Lung, D. C.; Ye, Z.; Song, W.; Liu, F.-F.; Cai, J.-P.; Wong, W.-M.; Yip, C. C.-Y.; et al. Intravenous Injection of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) MRNA Vaccine Can Induce Acute Myopericarditis in Mouse Model. Clin. Infect. Dis. 2021.

They injected three groups of mice: intramuscular (IM) with mRNA vaccine, deliberate intravenous (IV) injection with mRNA vaccine, and intravenous (IV) with saline (as the control group). Guess what? No myocarditis in the IM and control groups; “bingo” in the IV group.


This study provided in vivo evidence that inadvertent intravenous injection of COVID-19 mRNA vaccines may induce myopericarditis. Brief withdrawal of syringe plunger to exclude blood aspiration may be one possible way to reduce such risk.

Dr. Campbell however thinks this is not specific to mRNA vaccines and may also apply to viral vector vaccines (Oxford/AstraZeneca, etc.)

(3) Meanwhile in Israel, according to data from the Ministry of Health dashboard: I’ve been hesitant about posting data due to all the holidays affecting testing, but that season is now behind us, and it looks like we’re finally past the hump in every respect. Total severe cases have dropped to 528, of which 391 unvaccinated, 98 without boosters, and 33 with boosters. (Not clear what is the status of the remaining six: recovered and re-infected?) If comparing incidence per 100K people age 60+ in each status group, the ratios become truly lopsided: 142.1:28.7:2.3 (two). Yes, vaccinated+booster are about sixty times less likely (142.1/2.3=61.8) to be infected than unvaccinated.

About half the vaccinated population overall got boosters (3.5 out of 6.1 million), which is probably well above that of eligible people (younger people got vaccinated later and won’t become eligible until the next two months). In the most vulnerable 60+ age brackets, it’s more like 80% coverage:

blue=booster, light green=two doses, dark green=only one dose

What’s more, the epidemic propagation coefficient R has been at or below 0.75 for the past week. New hospital admissions, percentage of tests that come out positive, etc. are all down. The municipal “traffic lights” classification for the 280 largest municipalities is plotted here as a function of time: the graph speaks for itself. My own Tel-Aviv suburb went from “red” to “green” by degrees.

NB: day.month format for dates.

5 thoughts on “COVID19 update, October 4, 2021: is molnupiravir a game changer?; Accidental intravenous injection and myocarditis; brief Israel update

  1. 1, Are you hearing anything about statin drugs being used for Covid? I had a severe case – well, Covid wasn’t bad, the cytokine storm near to damn killed me though – and Remdesivir did very little, they were talking ICU and vent on day three of treatment. Then I mentioned statins to the doctors and they decided to give it a try. Within 24 hrs, my inflammatory markers were halved. In 48 hours, my O2 requirements dropped from 40lpm on high flow to 6lpm on nasal cannula. I know … anecdotal, but very similar to other reports where statins have been used. Dr Ryan Cole is pushing this as much as he can, but he’s being censored.

    2. Did you see this yet?
    The data from Israel on the numbers of vaccinated people getting infected and being hospitalized is quite concerning. What are you hearing about reports like this?

    • (1) So glad you’re better. I know various things are being tried ad hoc for trying to tamp down on CS. Not specifically aware of statins being tried here locally in any (semi-)systematic way. The immune system is weird and highly variable between individuals: I am not entirely surprised that statins might do some good in some people. And considering that high cholesterol _is_ a risk factor…
      (2) See my item (3). Since Berenson’s post claiming that weighting numbers of infections (and severe cases) of different vaccination statuses by the actual number of people in the said statuses was “a desperation tactic” I’ve had enough. [Lest there be any doubt, I vehemently disapprove of censorship by Tw*tter or other social media.]

      • Re: statins – they were discovered to be helpful when doctors figured out that their cardiac patients who were taking them were NOT getting infected when another household member did, or if they did, they had a very mild case.

        BTW – thank you. You had a post towards the beginning of all this, that had information about ACE2 involvement, and that NAC supplements could be protective or helpful. I started taking them, even hunting down an alternate source when Amazon suddenly and completely stopped selling them. Doctor saw that on my med list when I was in the hospital, and said that likely was why I recovered so easily and quickly. Your efforts to track down and post such information is a blessing. So thank you for your hard work.

  2. It’s a bit puzzling to see the emphasis on “vaxx passports” here in the States.
    It’s clear that vaccinated people can get infected and can transmit the virus. So being around them is not necessarily safe. Back a few months ago, stores used forehead thermometers to check if customers were feverish. That seems more rational.
    I’ve read that in Israel people who have not yet gotten a booster will have their vaccination pass rescinded, but I only saw a headline and brief report so there may be a more nuanced reality.

    I’ve begun to see speculation that the desperate push to get everyone vaccinated, including pregnant women and increasingly younger children, the censorship of dissenting voices, the refusal to consider natural immunity, demonization of pharmaceuticals like HCQ and ivermectin, etc, is a form of mass psychosis.
    All evidence points to the vaccines being helpful for people in at-risk groups but pressure to vaxx is off the charts.

    Here are a couple of links:

    Why do so many still buy into the narrative? (Covid specific)

    MASS PSYCHOSIS – How an Entire Population Becomes MENTALLY ILL (Generalized)

  3. I had never (so far) heard of statins as a possible treatment for Covid.
    Here’s another one, new to me, that I came across today in a blog comment.
    Over the counter anti-histamines and an antibiotic.

    Both “market-ticker” and “freerepublic” are conservative political/economic sites, not scientific/medical. The language is a bit bombastic as well, which is not confidence-building. But the results are interesting and the underlying paper might perhaps be worth knowing about.
    that’s been picked up at Free Republic:

    … in a not-so-tiny nation called Spain, a nursing home had a nasty virus get into it.
    It was March of 2020. The nasty virus was called Covid-19. And this nursing home, like so many others all over the world, was full of elderly, morbid people. The mean age of residents was 85 and 48% were over 80 years old. It was a killing field, like so many others…..

    Within three months 100% of the residents had caught the virus. Not presumed to have — proved to have.
    How do we know this? Because almost every one of them seroconverted. All but three out of 84 of them, to be precise.

    Think about that last sentence for a second.
    Almost every one of them seroconverted.
    How’s that possible? Many of them died, right? You can’t seroconvert if you’re dead.

    No. Not only did nearly none die none went to the hospital either because they rapidly figured out how to stop the virus from killing people — and did exactly that.

    You would have thought this would have been all over the news. In point of fact not one mention of it was made. Further, not one write-up was made in medical journals either until January of 2021, which I missed. My bad — out of the several hundred medical journal pieces, I missed this one. It was brought to my attention on my forum and my jaw immediately hit the floor.

    The jab train must continue, you see. So must the ventilator train. So must the money train, the mask train and the rest of the BS we have endured for the last 18+ months.

    So must the slaughter for money, the fear, and the lies.

    So what did these few nursing homes do that nobody has done since and nobody reported out at the time?

    1. Early start of treatment, regardless of the severity of patient symptoms.
    – Antihistamines every 12 h: dexchlorpheniramine 2 mg, cetirizine 10 mg or loratadine 10 mg.
    – Azithromycin 500 mg orally every 24 h for 3 days if there is rapid improvement, and for 6 days if the duration of symptoms is prolonged.
    – If pain or fever, acetaminophen 650 mg/6–8 h.
    – Nasal washing and gargling with sodium bicarbonate water (half a glass of warm water with half a teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate).
    2. Patients with mild or recent-onset symptoms (cough, fever, general malaise, anosmia, polymyalgia):
    – Antihistamines + Azithromycin (see mild treatment management)
    – Levofloxacin 500 mg/12 h, up to 14 days of antibiotic treatment from diagnosis.
    – Mepifilin solution, 50 mg/8 h as a bronchodilator, until subjective improvement. Patients with previous lung disease (asthma or COPD) used their usual bronchodilators.
    – If the patient experienced increased breathing difficulty, prednisone 1 mg/kg/day divided into two doses until clinical improvement, and then it was slowly tapered down.
    3. If symptoms of severity (dyspnea, breathing difficulty, mild or moderate chest pain, with SpO2 >80%, heart rate <100 beats per minute at any time of the process):
    4. Prophylactic treatment for close contacts, including all asymptomatic residents:
    – Antihistamines at the same dose as symptomatic patients.
    Look at that top line.

    Cetrizine is otherwise known as Zyrtec. Loratadine is otherwise known as Claritin. Dexchlorpheniramine is not often-used in the US anymore, but it used to be. The other two core drugs were Azithromycin and Levofloxacin, both common antibiotics with the first being the infamous "Zpak" from the HCQ+Zinc+Zpak combination that a fraudulent study was used to discredit.

    Both of the first two antihistamines are available over the counter in most nations including the United States. The dosing they used is twice that on the label. The two antibiotics are both available anywhere for little money.

    Before they started treating people three residents died. The entire group of them had the common maladies of old age — hypertension, diabetes, COPD, cardiovascular disease. Most were using a huge range of existing drugs for their conditions (5 or more.)

    As soon as they started treating people the following happened:

    All of our patients evolved satisfactorily and were recovered at the beginning of June. No adverse effects were recorded in any patient and no one required hospital admission. At the end of June, 100% of the residents and almost half of the workers had positive serology for COVID-19, most of them with past infection.

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