Science Backing Face Masks Is Lacking, Even In The Operating Room
Mandates To Wear Face Masks Part Of Selling Vaccines To A Wary Public
Face masks are baaack! The Delta Variant of COVID-19 is not halting the spread of the virus. The Centers for Disease Control advises face masks indoors even if fully vaccinated. Have we ever had a vaccine that didn’t work like this one?
The day after California dropped its face mask mandate, I walked into a Trader Joe’s store as the lone person not wearing a mask. It was like shoppers in the store froze. Everyone stared at me. Why wasn’t I wearing a mask? Why was I exposing them to the virus? But I wasn’t ill. And the chances I had COVID were remote. In fact, it takes 40,500 encounters with infected people to get infected and over 6 million encounters to produce 1 death.
Other reports estimate the odds of acquiring COVID-19 coronavirus infection from contact with an infected person is 1 in 3868 (ranges from in 626 to 1 in 31,800) and the odds of dying from COVID-19 is 1 in 19.1 million (ranges from 1 in 3.1 million to 1 in 159 million). These estimates are without citizens taking precautions such as face-masks and social distancing. Face masks are an exercise in futility.
No mandate needed
The masses are now trained, I thought. No mandate is needed now. Outside of drowning themselves in alcohol (home consumption up 500%), which they are doing, they have no other way to handle their fear. It’s not about science, it’s about politics from the side of our overlords and fear when it comes to the masses.
But they wear face masks in surgery, don’t they?
Forget about the lack of science behind face masks and infectious disease. It’s never been about science. Surprisingly, even wearing face masks in surgery has been called a mindless “ritual,” a “sacred cow;”
- …A practice that makes no difference in wound infection rates that has been known since the 1960s;
- …A practice when abandoned actually decreased postoperative wound infections by 36% (from 4.7% to 3.5%);
- …Failed to even contaminate Petri plates placed on the operating table with unmasked personnel just a meter away;
- …And has even undergone scientific scrutiny by the Cochrane Database System Review that concluded “it is unclear whether the wearing of surgical face masks by members of the surgical team has any impact on surgical wound rates.”
Face masks may be a “hail Mary” attempt to self-protect, which makes face masks a religion, not science.
Face masks to handle the anxiety
Here are direct quotes from The New England Journal of Medicine April 1, 2020 on universal face masking to protect against transmission of the COVID-19 Coronavirus:
“We know that wearing a mask outside health care facilities offers little, if any, protection from infection…
“The chance of catching Covid-19 from a passing interaction in a public space is… minimal….
“…During the care of a patient with unrecognized Covid-19…. A mask alone in this setting will reduce risk only slightly…
“…Universal masking alone is not a panacea….
“The extent of marginal benefit of universal masking over and above these foundational measures is debatable….
“Expanded masking protocols’ greatest contribution may be to reduce the transmission of anxiety.”
This is not the message Americans are hearing.
In lieu of valium mandates, face masks will do.
The news media makes it appear face masks are mandatory (by law), but unless some law has been passed in a State legislature, it is only a guideline.
Health authorities now concede that mandated measures to halt the spread of this mutated virus are only to provide peace of mind — face masks are only an anxiety reliever.
With no vaccine initially available in the early stages of the pandemic, which was announced in March of 2021, the best approach would have been to encourage natural immunity, which has now been found to be superior to immunization by vaccine. But public health agencies are bought off by the vaccine makers.
The main objective should be to limit COVID-19 associated deaths, not cases. Infection results in immunity! Given COVID-19 infection induces mild-to-no symptoms, and infection produces antibodies that may serve to prevent re-infection and further spread of the virus, prevention of cases is counterproductive. But natural immunity is simply ignored and not tabulated in the US. In the US, 95-99% of people who acquire this infection get well on their own.
Trading one infectious disease pandemic for another
Decisions about face mask policies in hospitals cannot be extrapolated to make policy about face masks in non-healthcare settings.
Hospitals, where a great deal of infectious disease begins, are a different banana. A convincing study shows when patients on a tuberculosis ward wore face masks and the air in their ward was piped into an adjoining lab with caged guinea pigs, the rate of infection in these lab animals dropped from 76.6% to 40.0%. Infectious disease can be spread. But again, that is in a controlled environment, not your living room. And the guinea pigs still got TB, just not as many. Face masks are not fool-proof.
Tuberculosis as an example; we don’t mask up for TB
Tuberculosis predominates over COVID-19 in the US. But no face mask mandates for TB patients.
Tuberculosis is a mycobacterial lung infection, not a virus. TB is slow-growing and can remain in a latent state in a patient’s lungs, to erupt when the immune system weakens, and kills far more people than COVID-19.
TB infections are far more common among immigrants and overseas travelers to the U.S, but no airborne protections are put into practice on incoming overseas air flights or hospital emergency rooms that commonly treat immigrants with TB.
There are 13 million potential spreaders of TB walking around America with latent (dormant) TB in their lungs that could erupt and infect others should their immune system crash, like after being indoors in a lockdown and deprived of sunshine vitamin D.
TB infects 2 billion people on the planet and kills 1.3 million a year. And COVID-19 is far less transmissible than measles, smallpox, polio and TB. By age group, COVID-19 is only considered lethal in 80+ year-olds.
It dawned upon TB doctors that the use of high-efficiency respirators would prevent as many as 25% of the TB cases being transmitted to healthcare workers. But the use of these respirators would cost $7 million per prevented case of TB, $100 million per life saved.
Ironically, lockdowns keep active TB cases, which must undergo 6-months of triple antibiotic treatment, from getting their antibiotics that need to be administered at clinics (not at home), potentially trading one pandemic for another.
To confound matters, investigators find COVID-19 antibodies are not long-lasting and that zinc-dependent T-cells (produced in the thymus gland) actually halt the infection, which means immunity rates (~30%) are far higher than antibody tests have shown.
So why do face masks continue to be advised?
An answer as to why mindless and science-less face masking continues is provided in a revealing study published in Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology entitled Sustaining High Influenza Vaccination Compliance With A Mandatory Masking Program. A 2-year mask education program involving three hospitals and 19,985 healthcare workers increased vaccine compliance from 47% to 90%! Face masks are a way to promote vaccination!
Public doesn’t have to comply: not a mandate
Face mask mandates are actually nothing more than guidelines and may result in outcomes that were not initially considered. The working conclusion that face masks are the most effective means to prevent transmission of infectious disease is highly questionable. The highest rate of transmission is in healthcare settings, not in the community.
There are a number of other factors that come into play in any analysis of the effectiveness of face masks. These co-factors confound any study of face masks. Confounding variables are: type of face masks, improper wear, lack of compliance, social distancing, prior exposure and immunity, seasonal risk (winter), lockdowns that keep people indoors away from vitamin D-producing sunlight, and asymptomatic cases.
Most infections start where faces masks are not being worn
A compelling shortfall of face mask mandates and guidelines is the realization that the majority of COVID-19 cases of transmission occur in hospital settings or in households (77.6% in one survey), an environment where facemasks are not usually worn.
A study published in the Canadian Family Physician concluded “the use of masks in households with a sick contact was NOT associated with significant infection risk reduction in any analysis regardless of whether the sick contact or family members wore face masks.”
While it can be said that some form of protection from “cough-generated” viral particles is better than nothing, frequently-worn cloth masks subject wearers to a 4.8-fold greater risk for actual infection compared to N95 respirators, which essentially makes this another farcical practice.
This is a confusing area of science. For example, a study in Japan reveals 16.4% of non-mask wearers were infected vs. only 7.1% of mask-wearers. The issue here is that these are not fool-proof practices and over time and may be practically futile. Given time the 7.1% will get infected. Better to work on natural immunity.
In another instance, a fully-masked healthcare worker who exposed 133 patients to COVID-19 while communicable resulted in 2.3% becoming infected. Not fool-proof!
Skip the science?
Professors use an overinflated death count based upon a specious nasal swab test that over-posited the number of COVID-19 infections, to say it is time to skip the science and “act without waiting for randomized controlled evidence,” and mandate face masks. It is the scientific community that this comes from.
Wearing a mask can result in exhaled air and accompanying viral RNA going into the eyes, as seen as fog on eyeglasses. Furthermore, it was noted that long-term wear of face masks often ends up with the wearer touching the face mask, which harbors viral particles, which may paradoxically increase risk of infecting others.
While N95 respirators are able to filter out viral particles not blocked by surgical or cloth face masks and were shown to reduce respiratory illness by 41% among healthcare workers, in fact N95 respirators were not statistically better than surgical masks in prevention of infection (influenza). The 8-to-12 times greater protection against viral particles with N95 respirators compared to surgical masks does not translate into fewer cases, just lower viral count.
There is obvious over-reliance upon face masks, as evidenced in a report entitled “Mandatory Universal Masking Is The Key To Stop COVID-19” (Journal of Global Health), which claims “without universal masking, asymptomatic and silent carriers who continue shedding virus would greatly undermined the efforts to contain the outbreak.”
The arrogance that anybody who objects to face masks as a policy to control infectious disease is not following the science is rampant throughout the medical community and in news reports.
Particle filtration doesn’t = less illness
A report published in the Western Medical Journal entitled “The Great Mask Debate: A Debate That Shouldn’t Be A Debate At All,” is another example. It concedes there was only 1 high-quality published trial of this topic at the time of the review and that “face coverings slow (but do not halt) the spread of COVID-19.”
Just like an auto tire that works 80% of the time, which would be totally unacceptable and would invite product liability claims,” partially effective face masks are no better. Anything short of an N95 respirator, that is strapped to the face, allows leakage of airborne droplets and virus particles, and therefore does not offer complete protection. A study confirms COVID-19 transmission among two parties who wore face masks and eye protection.
Data that is not valid
Too many published studies used as a scientific rationale for face masks are algorithmic models involving “assumptions” and “simulations” rather than real-life experience and outcomes, that drive this false pandemic.
Children as spreaders
CNN NEWS reporters say the “best way to reduce coronavirus transmission is by wearing a face mask, study finds.” But where can we find that science?
A regular surgical medical face mask has an efficacy of 24%—meaning that 24% of the airborne particles <2.0 microns are prevented from inhalation by the user of the mask.
There is talk that young children, who do get infected but show only one mild or no symptoms, shed the virus and therefore they must wear masks.
The claim has been made that face masking another other preventive measures were responsible for the near disappearance of the flu this year. This claim is totally preposterous. Somehow face masks were able to filter out influenza but not COVID-19 coronavirus? What incredulity.
A report in Health Affairs claims that “Estimates suggest as many as 230,000-450,000 COVID-19 cases possibly averted by the use of face masks” could be stated another way, that 230,000-450,000 individuals were delayed from developing natural immunity by use of face masks.
This writer is under no illusion this report will make any difference in the scheme of things. The report you have just read will not make a dent in the already ingrained fear of “catching COVID” if you don’t wear a face mask. Wearing face masks is an exercise in futility, but so is writing about it. I write reports like this for those few who don’t want to live their lives in fear. “There is no illusion greater than fear.” – Lao Tzu