Coronavirus Chronicles — Asymptomatic Disease, What’s the Big Deal?

The idea of a deadly illness being asymptomatic is tough to wrap one’s head around. Here it is addressed by Ed Taboada, Ph.D., who knows about molecular biology and evolutionary biology. But he speaks to the layperson, who can decide whether to grasp only some elemental ideas, or expand into new realms of knowledge.

This explanation is probably the most comprehensible one that ordinary people are likely to find:

When testing is done on a large scale and it’s randomized regardless of symptoms or not, we find that nearly half of people that test positive for the virus do not recall having had any symptoms prior to testing. While some of the people who had no recorded symptoms at the time of testing eventually develop symptoms (i.e. they weren’t really asymptomatic, they were only pre-symptomatic) many people do not develop symptoms subsequently (i.e. the “true” asymptomatics).

First of all, Taboada notes that there is not much clarification in the literature, about asymptomatic versus pre-symptomatic COVID-19. Although he discusses many aspects, in great detail, the main question in this instance is whether it can be caught from someone who never develops a single symptom.

Now, here’s the kicker. In the matter of what actually constitutes a symptom, consensus has not been arrived at. No joke. He writes,

Possibly the most objective symptom that we can think of is a fever because you can measure it… So sure, temperature checks will catch those people who have a fever but it will also miss all of the people who haven’t developed a fever yet and those that never ever shall develop one…

All other symptoms (a cough, a sore throat, nasal congestion or drippy nose, muscle aches, etc.) are somewhat subjective unless persistent and rely on an individual recalling such symptoms during an interview.

Problem is, a lot of people have symptoms all the time, or intermittently, just from living life on this increasingly toxic planet. They react to airborne pollutants; they are allergic to natural substances or to the hundreds of thousands of chemicals we encounter each day. So, why not just cut through all the guesswork and sign up for an rRT-PCR test? The author says,

But getting tested while asymptomatic is quite difficult unless you literally lie… [M]ost testing is being reserved for those with symptoms. Others are being asked to just quarantine themselves. If they develop symptoms then they can get tested and if they test positive then at least they know they were infected. If they never display symptoms, they get to keep wondering whether they ever had the virus or not.

Meanwhile, one person could be infecting dozens, each of whom could potentially infect dozens more. There are plenty of other questions, like whether being asymptomatically contagious has an upper or lower age limit. Taboada says,

If you keep hearing public health officials begging for more testing, including large-scale randomized testing, this is why. Each infected individual is a tiny ember that could start a massive wildfire unless detected early enough.

Your responses and feedback are welcome!

Source: “What is the evidence of asymptomatic transmission of COVID-19 where symptoms NEVER manifested?,”, 06/22/20
Image by Jernej Furman/CC BY 2.0

One Response

  1. The World Health Organization stated that asymptomatic Corona virus-infected people rarely infect others. Dr. Anthony Fauci stopped short of that conclusion, merely saying that “asymptomatic [but tested positive for Corona virus]” were not the drivers of the illness.
    Unemployment is the most severe since the Great Depression. Estimates of the number of unemployed people regaining their former jobs hover at about 50%. Some hospitals are reaching the annual number of suicides in 4 weeks. The filtering power of masks does not stop the minuscule virus; it is like using a chain-link fence to eliminate mosquitoes. Worldwide, 1 million people have descended into “severe poverty,” a starvation level condition.

    It must be tough to distinguish “asymptomatic” from “presymptomatic” infection. The difference has no traction in the mainstream media. Dr. Fauci hasn’t reported a cure for the Coronavirus. People whose symptoms subside for several days may reenter society from self-quarantine. Why the crisis?

    Since pathological symptoms are essential to the standard definitions of the words “infected,” “sickness,” and “illness,” the medical community must presume that a latent infection is in a dormant state. E.g., it would only be a matter of time before the asymptomatic patient suffered severe pathology. That deduction doesn’t seem to be the case. The doctors and reporters have overlooked the looming death-dealing disease. Otherwise, the medical community and government’s extreme measures forced upon voters and taxpayers is much ado about nothing. On the bright side, the people who vaccinate the entire planet at $1000 a pop will make a lot of money-and a lot more than a little bit.

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Dr. Robert A. Pretlow is a pediatrician and childhood obesity specialist. He has been researching and spreading awareness on the childhood obesity epidemic in the US for more than a decade.
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Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the American Society of Animal Science 2020 Conference
What’s Causing Obesity in Companion Animals and What Can We Do About It

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the World Obesity Federation 2019 Conference:
Food/Eating Addiction and the Displacement Mechanism

Dr. Pretlow’s Multi-Center Clinical Trial Kick-off Speech 2018:
Obesity: Tackling the Root Cause

Dr. Pretlow’s 2017 Workshop on
Treatment of Obesity Using the Addiction Model

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation for
TEC and UNC 2016

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the 2015 Obesity Summit in London, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s invited keynote at the 2014 European Childhood Obesity Group Congress in Salzburg, Austria.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2013 European Congress on Obesity in Liverpool, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2011 International Conference on Childhood Obesity in Lisbon, Portugal.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2010 Uniting Against Childhood Obesity Conference in Houston, TX.

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