Archive for the 2020 Category

Decontamination After Radiation Exposure: Simpler Than You May Think

Posted in 2020, Health with tags , , , , on April 21, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

 

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https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2011/03/17/134627643/decontamination-after-radiation-exposure-simpler-than-you-may-think?t=1587310914375

A boy evacuated from Koriyama, some 37 miles from the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant, gets scanned with a Geiger counter Wednesday.

Ken Shimizu/AFP/Getty Images

The Japanese government says 20 workers at the disabled Fukushima Dai-ichi power plant have been decontaminated after exposure to radioactive material.

Dozens more, at least, have reportedly been decontaminated within the 12-mile evacuation zone around the plant after Geiger counters picked up evidence of radiation exposure.

That made us wonder just how someone gets decontaminated from radiation – which, after all, is invisible, odorless, tasteless and generally insidious. Most people think of it as “rays,” which is partially correct.

The answer might surprise you.

“Decontamination is very simple,” says Dr. Eric Toner of the University of Pittsburgh’s Center for Biosecurity, who has studied what might happen in the wake of a terrorist’s “dirty bomb” attack.

“As a rule of thumb, 80 percent of decontamination is removing your clothes,” says Toner, an emergency physician. “And 95 percent is removing your clothes and taking a shower — if possible, shampooing your hair. That’s all that’s involved. No fancy chemicals.”

That’s because radiation is carried on dust particles. “The air isn’t radioactive, but small dust particles are,” Toner explains. “You’re essentially washing off the dust.”

So a rain is a good thing at the time of, or after, a radiation leak. Rain washes the dust from the air, diluting it in runoff. (Yes, the runoff would be radioactive, but diluted — and presumably, the ground would also be getting radiation exposure already.)

Dry air, when dust gets kicked up in the air and disbursed over longer distances, is bad.

By the way, the dusty clothes can often be decontaminated simply by washing them, but it depends on the amount of radiation detected. “If you have reason to think they’re heavily contaminated, they should be disposed of properly,” Toner says. That means put in a plastic bag and, if possible, taking them to authorities for disposal.

All this raises another question – how to decide if somebody needs to be decontaminated.

At a place like the Fukushima power plant, where workers wear dosimeters that constantly record exposure and the environment is being continually monitored for radioactivity levels, the decision is clear-cut.

But it’s far less so out among the general public. In a situation like the current one, there’s a profound lack of information on radiation levels at different distances from the power plant and how they might be fluctuating over time.

In an emergency room or post-disaster setting, Toner says doctors would usually use a Geiger counter to screen people – before decontamination, to see if they’ve had any detectable exposure to start with, and afterward, to see if they still have traces of radioactive dust.

There is a lot of Geiger-countering going on in northern Japan right now – as most TV-watchers know by now. But using Geiger counter readings, given in “counts-per-minute,” or cpm, is not necessarily a great way to know if you need decontamination. Or whether it’s time to start taking potassium iodide pills to protect against thyroid cancer.

Steve Herman knows about that. He’s a correspondent for Voice of America who got a Geiger counter scan Thursday in Koriyama, a town 37 miles from the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant as the crow flies.

“My body 1,500 cpm, my boots 3,000 cpm. Another reporter: 10,000 cpm on her shoes,” Herman tweeted.

What to make of those readings? It’s hard to know.

“It is really hard to interpret Geiger counter cpm’s,” Toner says. “They vary from machine to machine. For example, they depend on the size of the probe – the bigger the probe, the more counts detected. And each machine must be calibrated against a known source (of radiation). Translating the cpm’s to an actual exposure does take a health physicist.”

In addition, Geiger counter readings don’t tell you a thing about the type of radiation a person may be exposed to – whether it’s a fairly weak and short-lived isotope that doesn’t pose a health risk, a form of radioactive iodine that signals the need to take protective tablets, or a more sinister isotope, such as cesium-137, that can raise long-term health risks if it gets inside the body.

And this is the most worrisome form of contamination – internal contamination. The bad stuff on skin and clothes is easily washed off. But once radiactice particles get inside the body – through breathing in, but more importantly from ingestion – it can remain in tissues, possibly wreaking submicroscopic havoc, for a lifetime.

That’s why Thursday, Japanese authorities activated provisions of its Food Sanitation Act, which allows the government to test food for radioactive contamination and pull it from the market.

Experts say it was the Soviet Union’s failure to do that, for many weeks after the 1986 Chernobyl power plant disaster, that caused most of the health consequences – which continue to this day

 

 

 

UPDATE😭 Contamination Spread further. Look at the video…NORTHERN EUROPE…FRANCE. ITALY. GREECE ETC.. SPAIN..SOUTH ENGLAND…A major Catastrophe

Posted in 2020, Health with tags , on April 16, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

 

Added Apr 15, 2020


The red triangle represents the location of the fires, the time is in UTC.
The discharge used was evaluated by reverse modeling (exploitation of the available measurements) over the period from April 3 to 12, 2020, the simulation of the dispersion of air masses continues until April 14, 2020.
More information: https: //www.irsn.fr/FR/Actualites_pre …

Jesus! Dont you know we have lockdown situation going on?🤣

Posted in 2020 with tags on April 16, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

Jesus

NUCLEAR ENERGY: RADIATION VS. CONTAMINATION

Posted in 2020, Health with tags , , , , on April 16, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

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Pripyat in Ukraine had to be abandoned after the Chernobyl accident due to the high amount of radioactive contamination

A common misconception is the idea that exposure to radiation in turn makes someone radioactive. This is, usually, not the case. It’s important, then, to understand the differences between radiation, and radioactivity.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE RADIOACTIVE?

An atom is said to be “radioactive” if it is unstable due the excess of either energy or mass, and is therefore likely to decay at some point and give off radiation. A substance or material is said to be “radioactive” if it is made up of or contains a large quantity of a radioactive material. These radioactive materials, such as bananas, the uranium glaze in vintage fiestaware, or NORM generated in the process of natural gas exploration, give off radiation over time as the radioactive atoms in them decay.

Uranium Ore, a naturally radioactive substance
Uranium Ore, a naturally radioactive substance

Over time, as the number of unstable atoms decreases, the material becomes less radioactive. This time is measured by the “half life” of different radioactive elements. This is the amount of time it takes for half of the atoms in a given sample to decay and give off radiation. For example, carbon-14 has a half-life of 5730 years, so after that amount of time, a quantity of 100 atoms of C-14 would have turned into 50 C-14 atoms and 50 Nitrogen-14 atoms. Iridium-11, a radioactive isotope used in medicine as a tracer, has a half-life of 2.8 hours; whereas another isotope of iridium at the other end of the scale, iridium-115 has a half-life of 441 trillion years. It’s commonly held that a sample of radioactive material will be completely decayed after 7 half lives, though after that time there would still be about 0.78% left, which with a large enough starting sample would still be significant. For smaller samples like those typically used in medicine, though, it’s a good rule of thumb.

WHAT IS CONTAMINATION?

Put simply, radioactive contamination is just radioactive material somewhere it shouldn’t be. This could be anything from nuclear fallout from a dirty bomb (the whole purpose of which would be to disperse radioactive contaminant), to a lab worker splashing some of a radioactive solution on his pants and taking them home. The most common source of contamination is from mistakes or accidents in the production of radionuclides, like those used in the medical field.

Pripyat in Ukraine had to be abandoned after the Chernobyl accident due to the high amount of radioactive contamination
Pripyat in Ukraine had to be abandoned after the Chernobyl accident due to the high amount of radioactive contamination

Contamination on or in a surface can be either “fixed” or “removable.” An example of fixed contamination, or contamination that isn’t able to be removed, would be in metal recycling: If a batch of recycled metal included something with radioactive material in it, the final product would have that radioactive material mixed in and permanently part of it. Removable contamination is, of course, removable, such as a loose powder or something that can be cleaned and safely disposed of. Disposal of radioactive waste can consist of reprocessing it for commercial use, though in some cases where this isn’t possible the best solution is burying it in concrete, rock, as this helps prevent the spread of the contamination any further.

DOES BEING EXPOSED TO RADIATION MAKE ME RADIOACTIVE?

Exposure to radiation does not immediately make a person radioactive. The only type of radiation that is capable of directly causing other material to become radioactive is neutron radiation, which is generally only found inside nuclear reactors or in a nuclear detonation. Anyone in those conditions is, put plainly, going to have bigger problems.

CT Scans and other routine medical procedures expose someone to radiation without leaving that person radioactive afterward
CT Scans and other routine medical procedures expose someone to radiation without leaving that person radioactive afterward

However, the ingestion of radioactive material does have the potential of making a person radioactive, at least on a temporary basis. This is the principle behind the medical use of many radioactive materials, as it aids in imaging, diagnosis, and other areas. Between the short half-lives of the elements involved and the body’s natural means of disposing of many radioactive elements, a person’s individual radioactivity is usually short-lived. However, certain types of contamination, depending on the isotopes involved and the availability of treatment, can become more permanently deposited in a person’s organs or bones.

 

TO BE CONTINUED ON

https://www.mirion.com/learning-center/radiation-safety-basics/radiation-vs-contamination

EFFECTS OF RADIATION ON YOUR BODY :(

Posted in 2020, Health with tags , , , , , , , on April 15, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame


SOURCE OF THE ARTICLE ON
http://www.atomicarchive.com/Effects/radeffects.shtml

1) Hair

The losing of hair quickly and in clumps occurs with radiation exposure at 200 rems or higher.
(2) Brain

Since brain cells do not reproduce, they won’t be damaged directly unless the exposure is 5,000 rems or greater. Like the heart, radiation kills nerve cells and small blood vessels, and can cause seizures and immediate death.
(3) Thyroid

The certain body parts are more specifically affected by exposure to different types of radiation sources. The thyroid gland is susceptible to radioactive iodine. In sufficient amounts, radioactive iodine can destroy all or part of the thyroid. By taking potassium iodide, one can reduce the effects of exposure.
(4) Blood System

When a person is exposed to around 100 rems, the blood’s lymphocyte cell count will be reduced, leaving the victim more susceptible to infection. This is often refered to as mild radiation sickness. Early symptoms of radiation sickness mimic those of flu and may go unnoticed unless a blood count is done.According to data from Hiroshima and Nagaski, show that symptoms may persist for up to 10 years and may also have an increased long-term risk for leukemia and lymphoma.
(5) Heart

Intense exposure to radioactive material at 1,000 to 5,000 rems would do immediate damage to small blood vessels and probably cause heart failure and death directly.
(6) Gastrointestinal Tract

Radiation damage to the intestinal tract lining will cause nausea, bloody vomiting and diarrhea. This is occurs when the victim’s exposure is 200 rems or more. The radiation will begin to destroy the cells in the body that divide rapidly. These including blood, GI tract, reproductive and hair cells, and harms their DNA and RNA of surviving cells.
(7) Reproductive Tract

Because reproductive tract cells divide rapidly, these areas of the body can be damaged at rem levels as low as 200. Long-term, some radiation sickness victims will become sterile.


SOURCE OF THE ARTICLE ON
http://www.atomicarchive.com/Effects/radeffects.shtml

VITAMIN C: PROTECTION AGAINST RADIATION EXPOSURE (Japan,Pacific,West Coast USA, Ukraine and countries Around)

Posted in 2020, Health, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on April 15, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

vitamin-c-radiation-exposure

© Copyright – Sanuku
ARTICLE ON
https://www.sanuku.co.uk/2019/09/vitamin-c-against-radiation-exposure/

 

*Breaking* Wildfires are nearing the Chernobyl nuclear complex, creating a radioactive smoke, which is spreading across the region! UPDATE: Reliable sources, the capital of #Ukraine, #Kiev will be tomorrow evacuated due to a radioactive cloud reaching the city.

Posted in 2020, Health with tags , , , , , , on April 14, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

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*Breaking* Wildfires are nearing the Chernobyl nuclear complex, creating a radioactive smoke, which is spreading across the region!

As if the pandemic wasn’t enough, a peculiar situation is now developing in Ukraine, where wildfires are nearing Chernobyl, the site of the nuclear disaster in 1986.

Fires have emerged around April 4th in the Chernobyl’s exclusion zone, the 30-kilometer area around the former nuclear reactor, where authorities have prohibited people from living. The fires were started by locals, burning the dry grasslands near the exclusion zone. The image below is a satellite capture from NASA/MODIS, showing the smoke from the fires on April 10th.

Wildfires in the region have spread to just over a mile from the defunct Chernobyl nuclear power plant and a disposal site for radioactive waste. More than 300 firefighters were battling the fires. The image below from FIRMS shows the hotspots detected by satellites in the past 24 hours, where we can see the fires nearing the nuclear complex of Chernobyl.

Atlantide@Atlantide4world

Wildfires in have spread to just over a mile from the defunct nuclear power plant and a disposal site for radioactive waste, according to activists, as more than 300 firefighters work to contain the blaze. https://bit.ly/3aauXtf

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45 people are talking about this

The main concern is not the fire reaching the reactor facilities or waste storage since they are not exposed directly to the fire. The problem is the burning of the forests and dry grasslands around the nuclear complex, since the area far around is still radioactive from the disaster in 1986. When fires burn the radioactive biomass, the particles that are released are also radioactive and can be carried by the winds, along with the smoke.

CHERNOBYLwel.come@CHERNOBYLwelcom

BREAKING NEWS ➡️ RED FOREST IS BURNING ❗️

Now the fire reached and is located two kilometers directly from the Pidlisnyy radioactive waste storage facility, which houses the most highly active radiation waste of the entire zone and from the Chernobyl NPP

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138 people are talking about this

MilitaryAviationInUa@Ukraine_AF

An Antonov An-32P of the State Emergency Service of Ukraine dumps water on a forest fire at Chornobyl Exclusion Zone

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We created graphics from the NASA Geos-5 forecast system, which simulates the smoke from the Chernobyl fires, tracked as carbon monoxide loading. The first image is from yesterday, where the smoke was moving towards the north. The oncoming cold front has changed the wind direction which is now projected to send the smoke clouds (with potential radiation) towards the south and south-east. That would take the smoke over the capital of Kiev, and further towards the south into the Black Sea. The less likely (but plausible) scenario is, that the fires would spread even further, creating more radioactive smoke, which could spread west towards central Europe if the winds would be from the east. The current danger is limited to the surrounding areas and towards the Black Sea, but the situation will be monitored closely.

The radiation levels have already been measured to rise above the normal values, while the authorities in the capital are for now reporting normal values in Kiev. But that could change if the smoke with the radioactive particles would turn towards the south, directly over the city.

Shakthi | #StayAtHome

@v_shakthi

Brush fires near have radiation levels to 16 times above average after an unusually warm winter turned the forested exclusion zone into acres of dry grass

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See Shakthi | #StayAtHome’s other Tweets

SaeculumRomanum@SRomanum

A bus ride in the exclusion zone tonight. Unfortunately no exact location was given

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25 people are talking about this

The fires have spread quite fast during the weekend, due to strong winds, making it very hard to contain it. Some relief has come tonight, as a cold front has brought rain to help fight the fires, and extinguishing some of the hotspots. Firefighters are on alert, to monitor the situation, as the weather provides aid with rainfall.

ISCResearch@ISCResearch

: forest fire burning near reactor ignites alerts In the Chernobyl exclusion zone the radiation has increased 16 times.

View image on Twitter

ISCResearch@ISCResearch

🚨 URGENT – 🇺🇦 : There are reliable sources they say, the capital of , will be tomorrow evacuated due to a radioactive cloud reaching the city.

View image on Twitter
30 people are talking about this

We will keep you updated on any important further development. While you wait for more updates, don’t miss the latest pattern development, as a major  blocking high builds over the North Atlantic:

*April blocking* A remarkable blocking ridge will develop in the North Atlantic, affecting everything from the weather to the stratospheric Polar vortex and the Arctic sea ice!

 

ARTICLE AND FOLLOW UPDATE ON

Warning! April 14th 2010…Ongoing Disaster last 10 days! Arson fire in Chernobyl. Radiation levels spike dramatically as forest fires burn in exclusion zone

Posted in 2020, Health with tags , , , on April 14, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame
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Fire raging near Ukraine’s Chernobyl poses radiation risk, say activists

 

KIEV/MOSCOW (Reuters) – A huge forest fire in Ukraine that has been raging for more than a week is now just one kilometre from the defunct Chernobyl nuclear power plant and poses a radiation risk, Greenpeace Russia warned on Monday, citing satellite images.

An aerial view shows a forest fire in the 30 km (19 miles) exclusion zone around the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, Ukraine, April 12, 2020, in this still picture taken from video. Reuters TV/via REUTERS
Radioactive 1

Ukraine’s Emergency Situations Service said it was still fighting the fires, but that the situation was under control.

( SOME SAY IT IS NOT THAT THEY ARE LYING)

Video footage shot by Reuters on Sunday showed plumes of black smoke billowing into the sky and trees still ablaze, with firefighters in helicopters trying to put out the fires.

Aerial images of the 30 km (19 mile) exclusion zone around the plant, site of the world’s worst nuclear accident in 1986, showed scorched, blackened earth and the charred stumps of still smouldering trees.

The Emergency Situations Service said radiation levels in the exclusion zone had not changed and those in nearby Kiev, the Ukrainian capital, “did not exceed natural background levels”.

 

(OTHER SOURCES SAY 16 TIMES HIGHER THAN NORMAL)

Greenpeace Russia said the situation is much worse than Ukrainian authorities believe, and that the fires cover an area one thousand times bigger than they claim.

On April 4 Ukrainian authorities said the blaze covered an area of 20 hectares, but Greenpeace cited satellite images showing it was around 12,000 hectares in size at that time.

“According to satellite images taken on Monday, the area of the largest fire has reached 34,400 hectares,” it said, adding that a second fire, stretching across 12,600 hectares, was just one kilometre away from the defunct plant.

Ukrainian officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment on those claims.

Rashid Alimov, head of energy projects at Greenpeace Russia, said the fires, fanned by the wind, could disperse radionuclides, atoms that emit radiation.

Slideshow (6 Images)
Go to website

“A fire approaching a nuclear or hazardous radiation facility is always a risk,” Alimov said. “In this case we’re hoping for rain tomorrow.”

Chernobyl tour operator Yaroslav Yemelianenko, writing on Facebook, described the situation as critical.

He said the fire was rapidly expanding and had reached the abandoned city of Pripyat, two kilometers from where “the most highly active radiation waste of the whole Chernobyl zone is located”. He called on officials to warn people of the danger.

Satellite images taken by NASA Worldview and seen by Reuters showed the two fires had extended far into the exclusion zone.

The fires, which follow unusually dry weather, began on April 3 in the western part of the exclusion zone and spread to nearby forests.

Police say they have identified a 27-year old local resident who they accuse of deliberately starting the blaze.

It remains unclear if the person, who has reportedly confessed to starting a number of fires “for fun”, is partly or fully responsible………!!!!

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-ukraine-chernobyl-fire/fire-raging-near-ukraines-chernobyl-poses-radiation-risk-say-activists-idUSKCN21V1QW

……
No arson fire…for fun…..
Read article

In Chernobyl’s radioactive forest, arson and timber smuggling

More than 30 years after nuclear accident, fires pose environmental risks and stir fears over illegal logging.

FULL ARTICLE ON

https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/chernobyl-radioactive-forest-arson-timber-smuggling-200214104539121.html

Declassified FBI document Suggests “Beings From Other Dimensions” Have Visited Earth

Posted in 2020, Galaxy, Uncategorized with tags , on April 14, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

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According to a declassified document released by the FBI, not only are we being visited by Alien beings from other worlds, but we have been visited by “beings from other dimensions.”

The official link from the FBI vault can be found here:

http://vault.fbi.gov/UFO/UFO%20Part%201%20of%2016/view

Is it surprising that the FBI has shown interest in the study of the UFO phenomena? Is it possible that many science fiction films are actually based on real events, or better called “leaks” given by the government in order to deliberately raise awareness among the population?

In 2011 after some documents were “declassified” a report written by a special agent of the FBI in 1947 reached the public. The special agent of the FBI, a lieutenant colonel whose identity, remained anonymous because of “national security” gather numerous data on the UFO phenomena after interviewing and studying the phenomena for years.

According to reports and “Declassified” documents, we have been visited by numbs extraterrestrial species, some of these, are not only from other planets but from other dimensions. Some of these beings originate from an ethereal plane coexistent with our physical universe. These “entities” that could “materialize” on our planet appeared as giant translucent figures.

fbi-interdimensional-ufos

Here is a transcript of some of the most important details of the report:

1. Part of the disks carry crews; others are under remote control

2. Their mission is peaceful. The visitors contemplate settling on this plane

3. These visitors are human-like but much larger in size

4. They are not excarnate Earth people but come from their own world

5. They do NOT come from a planet as we use the word, but from an etheric planet which interpenetrates with our own and is not perceptible to us

6. The bodies of the visitors, and the craft, automatically materialize on entering the vibratory rate of our dense matter

7. The disks posses a type of radiant energy or a ray, which will easily disintegrate any attacking ship. They reenter the etheric at will, and so simply disappear from our vision, without trace

FULL ARTICLE ON

Declassified FBI Document Suggests “Beings From Other Dimensions” Have Visited Earth

 

COVID-19 and Vitamin D: Could We Be Missing Something Simple?

Posted in 2020, Health with tags , , , on April 13, 2020 by theboldcorsicanflame

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[CHD note: With the United States largely shut down and the deaths from COVID-19 rising, we wanted to share the following information and questions with our readers.  Please share this widely on social media, particularly with health professionals on the front lines, government officials and anyone who might be interested in studying Vitamin D and coronaviruses.]

Introduction

Briefly, the literature on Vitamin D’s role in immune health has exploded in the past 10 years, particularly in relation to viral infections and autoimmune disorders.  Approximately 80% of the literature is new in the past decade and much of it has been published overseas.  There are studies showing that Vitamin D sufficiency is important to reduce mortality in ventilated patients.  There is a large and growing literature on Vitamin D’s role in preventing viral infections and reducing their severity.

The populations at highest risk of severe cases of COVID-19 (the elderly and those with underlying health conditions) and the timing of the outbreak (end of winter in the Northern Hemisphere when population Vitamin D levels are typically lowest) are consistent with deficient Vitamin D status being a risk factor for COVID-19.  The relatively small percentage of infections in children may reflect children’s higher milk consumption since milk is fortified with Vitamins A and D.  Vitamin D is both a vitamin and a steroid hormone with hundreds of roles in our bodies.

2018 study based on NHANES data from 2001-2010 found that 28.9% of American adults were Vitamin D deficient (serum  25(OH)D<20ng/ml)  and an additional 41.4% of American adults were Vitamin D insufficient (serum 25(OH)D between 20ng/ml and 30ng/ml).  Americans who were black, less-educated, poor, obese, current smokers, physically inactive or infrequently consumed milk had higher prevalence of Vitamin D deficiency.  Those with intestinal disorders (Crohn’s or celiac) that reduce dietary uptake of Vitamin D and those with liver or kidney diseases that may reduce the body’s conversion of Vitamin D to its active form may also be at increased risk of deficiency regardless of age.  Vitamin D is a fat-soluble steroid hormone that regulates over 200 genes in the human body.

Questions that need answers

Based on the breadth of the research on Vitamin D in acute respiratory disorders and the many viral infections in which Vitamin D status plays a role, the following questions need to be answered:

  • Are hospitalized COVID-19 patients Vitamin D deficient (serum 25(OH)D levels < 20ng/ml) or insufficient (levels between 20ng/ml and 30ng/ml)?
  • Are hospitalized COVID-19 patients more Vitamin D deficient than would be expected in matched controls?
  • Are hospitalized COVID-19 patients who need intensive care more Vitamin D deficient?
  • Does giving high-dose Vitamin D to COVID-19 patients reduce their need for mechanical ventilation and/or reduce the amount of time that they require mechanical ventilation?
  • Does giving high-dose Vitamin D to health-care workers reduce their risk of COVID-19?
  • If Vitamin D deficiency is found in severe COVID-19 patients, what recommendation should be made to the general public, particularly those who are quarantined and/or fighting infections at home?

While only time and studies will give us definitive answers to these questions, Vitamin D testing is widely available, supplements are inexpensive and in a COVID-19 critical care setting we should consider anything that might reduce the number of cases, hospitalizations and deaths.  Even a 10% reduction in one of these metrics would have a major impact.

The literature supports the importance of Vitamin D sufficiency

There are studies suggesting that sufficient Vitamin D reduces the risk of acute respiratory infections.  Also, the literature supports the importance of Vitamin D sufficiency in reducing morbidity and mortality in critical care settings.  This is a sample of the literature.

2017 article in the BMJ states the following: “25 eligible randomized controlled trials (total 11 321 participants, aged 0 to 95 years) were identified… Vitamin D supplementation reduced the risk of acute respiratory tract infection among all participants (adjusted odds ratio 0.88, 95% confidence interval 0.81 to 0.96; P for heterogeneity <0.001).”  The protective effects were greatest in those who were deficient (serum levels <25 nmol/L = 10ng/ml) and in those who took Vitamin D regularly (on a daily or weekly basis) compared to large bolus doses.

Another 2018 review of the literature specifically in intensive care settings suggests that the non-significant results in some large trials of Vitamin D supplementation are likely the result of including subjects who are Vitamin D sufficient in the trials and not excluding Vitamin D supplements in the control groups.  The authors are clear that “three different meta-analyses confirm that patients with low vitamin D status have a longer ICU stay and increased morbidity and mortality” and that “this hormone plays an important pleiotropic (having more than one effect) role in the setting of critical illness and may support recovery from severe acute illness.”

A small 2019 Iranian studyrecommended larger follow-up studies after randomizing 44 mechanically ventilated adult patients to 300,000 IU of Vitamin D vs. placebo.  The study found a significant reduction in mortality (61.1% vs. 36.3%) and a non-significant 10-day reduction in time on the ventilator.

In a 2018 follow-up pilot study they found that in critically ill, ventilated patients, with Vitamin D deficiency and anemia, high-dose Vitamin D increased hemoglobin.

Additionally, a research group at Emory published a 2016 pilot study showing that high-dose Vitamin D decreased hospital length of stay in ventilated ICU patients.  In a 2018 follow-up pilot study they found that in critically ill, ventilated patients, with Vitamin D deficiency and anemia, high-dose Vitamin D increased hemoglobin.

2017 study found that “Monthly high-dose vitamin D3supplementation reduced the incidence of ARI (acute respiratory infections) in older long-term care residents but was associated with a higher rate of falls without an increase in fractures.”

2015 study in Thorax found that Vitamin D deficiency was common in patients who developed acute respiratory distress syndrome after esophagectomy.

2018 study in the Indian Journal of Anesthesia reported no significant results in mechanically respirated patients based on Vitamin D deficiency vs. sufficiency at admission, but this was likely due to small sample size.  The trends for days in the ICU, days on mechanical ventilation, days to spontaneous breathing trial and 30-day mortality were all more favorable in the group with sufficient Vitamin D.

In another 2018 Iranian study of 46 patients with Vitamin D deficiency and Ventilator-Associated Pneumonia, a single dose of 300,000 IU of Vitamin D compared to placebo significantly reduced serum levels of IL-6 and significantly reduced mortality.  IL-6 is a cytokine that is typically elevated in acute respiratory distress syndrome.

Unlike the above studies, a large 2014 Austrian study of 492 critically ill patients with Vitamin D deficiency did not find significant results with Vitamin D supplementation for most of its outcome measures.  The only significant result was decreased hospital mortality in the severely Vitamin D deficient subgroup.  However, this study population included surgical, neurological and medical patients and it is possible that Vitamin D is only relevant for respiratory infections.  Also, this study reported no serious adverse events using very high doses of Vitamin D in a critically ill population.

2017 rat study showed that pretreatment with calcitriol (the active form of Vitamin D) reduced lipopolysaccharide-induced acute lung injury by modulating the renin-angiotensin system.  ACE and ACE2 are part of this system and ACE2 is the binding site of SARS-CoV2 on cells.  There is an unresolved ongoing debate on whether angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (ACE inhibitors) used to treat blood pressure and heart conditions increase or decrease the risk of SARS-CoV2 infection.  How Vitamin D deficiency might fit into this discussion is an open question.

Interestingly, a 2018 case-control study of 532 Japanese workers found that in a subgroup of participants without vaccination, vitamin D sufficiency was associated with a significantly lower risk of influenza.

Research on Vitamin D in other viral infections

Vitamin D deficiency has been studied in many viruses and, generally, sufficient Vitamin D levels lead to lower rates of infection and less severe cases.  This research is a combination of in vitro and in vivo studies.  There is no specific literature on coronaviruses so we looked for research on Vitamin D in other viral infections including Influenza, HIV, Dengue, Epstein Barr, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C.  Some examples follow:

2018 Chinese trial of two different doses of Vitamin D in 400 infants showed significantly lower risk of influenza A, reduced viral load and reduced duration of symptoms in the group on the higher dose.  A similar 2010 studyin Japanese school children found that 1200 IU/day of Vitamin D reduced Influenza A infections from 18.6% in the placebo group to 10.8% in the supplemented group.  The supplemented children with asthma also had a reduced risk of asthma attacks.  Interestingly, a 2018 case-control study of 532 Japanese workers found that “In a subgroup of participants without vaccination, vitamin D sufficiency (≥30 ng/mL) was associated with a significantly lower risk of influenza (odds ratio 0.14; 95% confidence interval 0.03-0.74)”.

2018 study of youth with HIV showed that high-dose Vitamin D attenuated immune activation and exhaustion from anti-retroviral therapy.  A 2016 study of 466 South African infants (half HIV-infected) found that low Vitamin D and SNPs on certain genes increased the risk of tuberculosis and death. A 2018 review of Vitamin D in HIV infection states, “High levels of VitD and VDR expression are also associated with natural resistance to HIV-1 infection. Conversely, VitD deficiency is linked to more inflammation and immune activation, low peripheral blood CD4+ T-cells, faster progression of HIV disease, and shorter survival time in HIV-infected patients.”

A small 2020 study of healthy patients showed that higher dose Vitamin D supplementation reduced susceptibility to DENV-2 (dengue) infection in blood cells.  A 2017 study of human monocyte-derived macrophages found that “DENV bound less efficiently to vitamin D3-differentiated macrophages, leading to lower infection”.

The situation with Vitamin D deficiency and Epstein-Barr virus infection in Relapsing/Remitting Multiple Sclerosis (RRMS) is more nuanced.  While each is an independent risk factor for RRMS, recent studies have found that high-dose Vitamin D supplementation resulted in significantly lower antibody levels to EBNA-1.  In this case the lower antibody levels lead to lower risk of relapse and lower risk of new lesions on MRI.

2019 meta-analysis of studies of Vitamin D status in chronic Hepatitis B infections found that “Vitamin D levels were lower in CHB patients and inversely correlated with viral load”.  A 2018 Israeli study found that Hepatitis B transfected liver cancer cells actually downregulate Vitamin D receptors to allow the virus to replicate.

In a 2012 Israeli study, the addition of Vitamin D to standard anti-viral therapy in patients with chronic Hepatitis C infections improved viral response.  A 2015 study of Egyptian children with Hepatitis C found that cases treated with Vitamin D along with antivirals showed significantly higher “early and sustained virological response” compared to controls.

One additional factor should be considered.  Single nucleotide polymorphisms that affect Vitamin D Receptor function and metabolism of Vitamin D to its active form affect sufficiency, so identifying patients with those polymorphisms will help identify those at greater risk for Vitamin D deficiency.  There is a growing literature on these genetic factors as well.

Last week, former CDC Director, Dr. Tom Frieden, suggested that Vitamin D might decrease coronavirus infections.  We hope this article will convince doctors and researchers to take a closer look at Vitamin D as a potential preventative and therapeutic option.  As we stated in our recent video, we think that scarce resources should be focused on treatment versus a vaccine that may never materialize.

Last, a caveat

This is not medical advice and you should not take high doses of Vitamin D without checking with your doctor, particularly if you have any underlying health conditions.  Vitamin D does have potential toxicity at high levels including hypercalcemia and kidney stones.  A daily dose of 800 IU – 2000 IU of Vitamin D is generally regarded as safe and will produce sufficiency in most people, but more is not necessarily better.  NIH’s information on Vitamin D dosing and drug interactions can be found here.

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COVID-19 and Vitamin D: Could We Be Missing Something Simple?

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