What Do We Know About Responding To Anthrax?

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... Keeping in mind that we're talking about "just folks".

I couldn't find anything in the archives here, unless I missed it somehow.

How much is known, surmised or just plain guessed about how to protect ourselves and our families? Any doctors out there? Biochemists?!!!

-- BigDog (BigDog@duffer.com), November 12, 1999


http://www.nbc-med.org/SiteContent/HomePage/WhatsNew/MedAspects/ contents.html

Check out this place. PDF documents that cover most of the bases. They will answer some of your questions and do contain specifics about anthrax, tuleramia, plague, smallpox, Rift Valley fever, VEE, etc. including diagnosis, epidemiology and treatment....More later, but yes, some of this is manageable by mere humans with the right stuff...

-- Don Kulha (dkulha@vom.com), November 12, 1999.

Oral doxycycline is the antibiotic of choice. Administration must commence before onset of symptoms of pulmonary anthrax.

Note: Soviets have maintained very large, sophisticated biowar apparatus. They are well-versed in the latest technological advances in industrial microbiology, including gene-splicing.

The former #2 man in Soviet germ warfare program, "Ken" Alibek, defected to USA & wrote a book on this topic called "Biohazard." A truly scary book.

Alibek says they've developed "weaponized" strains of a variety of dangerous microbes, including anthrax. These are specially bred for resistance to antibiotics.

If we are attacked by Russia, drugs may not help. Only way to escape infection would be to stay in a pressurized room or a bomb shelter with a very good quality air filter.

-- Not Whistlin' Dixie (not_whistlin_dixie@yahoo.com), November 12, 1999.

If anthrax were to be used as a successful bioweapon, it would have to be in an aerosol form (inhaled). Being odorless and tasteless, if you were exposed you would never know it. The initial symptoms of anthrax infection are virtually identical to respiratory diseases such as flu, pneumonia or the common cold and would most likely be dismissed as such. Once symptoms begin, there is no cure. Period. Antibiotics will not work. Herbs will not work. Colliodal silver will not work.

Antibiotics can be successful if begun immediately after exposure.

The only practical way to protect yourself and your family is to avoid heavily populated areas (large cities). Statistically speaking, they are more likely to be targeted by terrorists.

-- Sam Mcgee (weissacre@gwtc.net), November 13, 1999.

Think "The Stand"- remember what it took to spread that? One infected couple I believe......

-- farmer (hillsidefarm@drbs.com), November 13, 1999.

Sam covered the "protection" part of your question. I'd add that you have to watch for reports and early hints of outbreaks. I get the MMWR and Infectious Disease reports from CDC Atlanta, periodic stuff from the Center for Civilian Biodefense at Johns Hopkins and other WMD reports. Way too much stuff and "unsettling" to boot. I do hear reports of "natural" outbreaks on a local news radio and in the local paper. Ratchet up your attention levels a notch. Understand the enemy (bug).

Right now I'm in "student" mode as regards, virology, epidemiology and understanding biowarfare agents and tactics and response. It's only in the last year that I came to realize what the threat really was. Now I'm trying to make reasonable and effective preps. It's tough, we didn't get this material in high school. As a disaster comm worker I could end up in harms way too (local OES isn't up on this stuff).

Our preps include a crash education, some very good masks (paper and cartridge), appropriate clothing, the right (I hope) gloves, boots, decontamination stuff, some meds, and living "elsewhere" (as far as targets go). Able to respond on a couple different threat levels. I've spent too much time (and money; about $250 per body) on this; there's a lot of other stuff needs doing. Pretty much set for my son and am fine tuning these and other preps as the clock clicks down (need envirochem and another sprayer). Likely cut back e-subs to just the MMWR soon. It is possible for mere mortals to take meaningful steps for biosafety; whether you need to depends...Best of luck to us all.

-- Don Kulha (dkulha@vom.com), November 14, 1999.

Don -- could I trouble you to break down in detail the items you have per person and how/why they added up to $250 per? Also, how do you subscribe to the information sources you mentioned? And when you say, "understand what the threat really was/is", what do you mean?

This is an important subject and hasn't been soberly covered on this forum to my knowledge. Let's get it down to brass tacks. This isn't just for info sake -- we're trying to decide precisely what to do or not do ASAP.

-- BigDog (BigDog@duffer.com), November 14, 1999.

BD, other Friends....

Have a few minutes here before I have to take off (fuel drum run) so I'll answer part of BD's post....

How did we spend $250 per for chem/bio preps. Well actually I understated that by a little, but then there are a few items which I'm accounting for here which could serve the needs of more than us two, hence the cost per would go down. As some of you realize I take this seriously so some of this might seem a bit "much" (guilty) but then I've noticed Mr. Murphy ignores me when I'm prepared.

The dollar side of the preps:

2 - MCU-2P Surplus Air Force (or Navy) Gas Masks $150 (from VFA34@AOL.COM) 24 - Spare 40mm NBC Filters $66 (Sportsmans Guide, SG) 6 - Coated Tyvek Hooded Suits $45 (Gemplers) 2 - Pr., Waterproof Rubber Boots $45 (Gemplers) 13 - Pr., NBC Rated, New Surplus Rubber Gloves $15 (CTD - CheaperThanDirt + SG) 1 - Box 100, Class 1 med 4mm nitrile Exam Glove $20 (Gemplers) 4 - NBC Plastic Boot covers, $8 (CTD) 2 - New Mask, Outsert Lenses (for MCU-2P) $30, (M17 Parts Co.) 2 - Boxes, N95 paper masks, $40 (Gemplers) 2 - Boxers (100e) Latex 11" exam glove $6 (local surplus) 1 - Roll, 3"X180' OD Duct Tape 1 - MCU-2P Maintanence Manual $16 (M17) 9 - Various Meds (antibiotics) $125, ( 100@250mg per: Amoxil, Ampicillin, Tetracycline, Keflex, Erthromycin, Keflex, Pennicillin, + 2X100ml Penn G Procaine injectable). Not quite done yet...need streptomyicin and some Rifampin would be good.

Amounts to a bit more that $250 per and I didn't mention the garden sprayers, bleach for disinfecting and a few oddds and ends. Have other stuff that applies and hunting for a few others. Bought about $150 worth of books related to Chem/Bio too.

Probably seems "excessive" to most and I'd agree. I tend to attack problems I percieve very aggressively. Don't have a lot of money but I prioritize preps higher than movies, eating out, new cars, big house, toys (for me...my 10 year old son is something else again), etc.

Back to this a bit later....

-- Don Kulha (dkulha@vom.com), November 16, 1999.

A few online resources as mentioned earlier.....Good Stuff

Center for Civilian BioDefense Studies http://www.hopkins- biodefense.org/ CDC MMWR and EID Reports http://www.cdc.gov/subscribe.html and http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/eid/about.htm USAMRIID website http://www.usamriid.army.mil/ WHO's Weekly Epidemiological Record http://www.who.int/wer/ Chemical and Biological Defense Information Analysis Center Newsletter http://www.cbiac.apgea.army.mil/newsletter/Default.htm

-- Don Kulha (dkulha@vom.com), November 17, 1999.

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