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Dr. Michael Yeadon: Why Mechanical Ventilation During the COVID “Pandemic” Was Almost Always Inappropriate
I knew the moment I heard they were putting people with alleged influenza-like illnesses on ventilators that it was a method of killing people.
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By Dr. Michael Yeadon March, 27 2023
I wrote this post in a discussion thread but I happen to think it might be important enough to share as a post on its own.
I’ve known right from the off (February 2020) that inappropriate mechanical ventilation has been widely used. I didn’t focus on it publicly because I’m just a PhD. Surely if I was right, medics all over the place would be calling this out?
The fact that they didn’t mean I just left it alone for some time.
Now I appreciate that knowing something and speaking about it are entirely different things. So mostly silent medics aren’t a good guide. Here’s what I’ve always thought about the topic.
An anecdote. When I heard politicians wringing their hands and calling for 30,000 or 40,000 ventilators, I was absolutely shocked. In no universe can there be a need of that scale. I had two thoughts.
The first one was that there really was something almost universally lethal in certain groups, like the frail elderly, and hospitals were going to be full of people literally dying in the waiting rooms with screaming relatives imploring hospital staff to “do something” to save their relative.
In such a world, ANY mechanical ventilator would serve to render inevitable death a great deal less traumatising. So here, even what they call a transport ventilator in an ambulance (a low tech device which is life saving for the few minutes between getting the patient stabilised at a scene and placing them into the hands of a fully equipped urgent care facility) would do.
I knew that low tech ventilators like this CANNOT be used to maintain a patient. You will kill all of them, even a fit young person so treated, placed on a primitive ventilator for long enough, will die.
Even sophisticated ventilators, life support systems, are inherently dangerous. The skilful intensivist knows how to minimise ventilator induced injuries and also to reduce the risk of ventilator acquired infectious pneumonia.
If you put a non specialist in charge, God help you. It didn’t take me long to realise that the “out” I had created, more for myself than anything else, was bogus.
So onto the second thought. These ventilators were being used to transition people who weren’t at appreciable risk of dying into a body bag, in return for heaps of cash (in the US). What the psychological pathway was in U.K., I have no idea.
Anyway, here’s my post which may well be expanded into an article for the alternative media. I would need a medical specialist coauthor for credibility.
My next point of attack is mechanical ventilation.
I knew the moment I heard they were putting people with alleged influenza-like illnesses on ventilators that it was a method of killing people. How did I know that?
I’ve worked over thirty years in and around respiratory diseases.
I know what a mechanical ventilator does & when it may be appropriate or even mandatory if the patient is to have any chance of survival.
I called a then-friend who was an immunology professor at a minor English university. I knew he had lots of Italian peers and research collaborators (a mixture of clinicians and PhDs).
We jumped on a call with one Italian clinical respiratory expert, who was distressed at what his clinical peers were doing in the hospitals in northern Italy. They’d been told to “follow the Wuhan protocol”, which was “get them sedated, intubated, and ventilated as fast as possible”.
All informal. I haven’t seen such guidance written down, probably because it would be incredibly incriminating.
He persuaded a peer to run an informal comparison for a week, telling “covid” patients that at the time we didn’t know whether ventilation or no ventilation was the best path. Anyone with a strong preference got their choice. Others who said to the doctor, “you decide”, were randomised to ventilation or not. If not, they got “usual care”, which was very little mostly, but if they desaturated, they got an oxygen mask.
They stopped the trial early, as almost everyone ventilated died whereas almost everyone not ventilated survived. As I knew they would.
Mechanical ventilation is pretty much CONTRAINDICATED in frail, elderly patients.
It’s a very unnatural way to inflate lungs and is commonly associated with lung injury (followed by oedema, water invading air spaces, which raises resistance and drops compliance so ventilator pressure has to be increased and so the negative spiral continues until death).
Think right now as you inhale slowly. What’s making air flow into your lungs, making them expand? It’s not being inflated from the outside being higher pressure than the inside.
No, you inhale by LOWERING the pressure inside your lungs. The air simply flows in, down the pressure gradient. You create that sucking pressure by swinging your rib cage upwards and forwards & at the same time, completely automatically, you contract your diaphragm which sits across the lower part of your chest, like a rubber sheet across the wide part of a bell. During exhalation, it’s slack and curves gently upward in the centre.
Got an intact chest wall? No pneumothorax? Not got an obstructive airway disease like COPD, asthma? Then the patient can breathe on their own and should not be ventilated. The question about obstruction relates to the fact that if you are obstructed, you eventually tire from the “work of breathing” & you spiral down to unconsciousness. These patients didn’t have that. Flu is not an obstructive lung disease.
If the patient is desaturating, and blood oxygen falling, give them an oxygen mask.
Treat their other symptoms. Usually, panic is the most prominent symptom, because they’re scared to death. The mass media did that. So, low dose (eg 2mg Valium) oral benzodiazepine, just one time. Have someone check on them often. What does that involve?
A clinician friend who’s a master ER/A&E doc says, “get your head on the same level as the patient and look at them when you speak. Time slows down when you do that. You notice more about the patient and that builds confidence and trust. That alone is worth a lot in a crisis”.
Ventilators are utterly brilliant, lifesaving devices for things like chest wall injury where they can no longer inflate their own lungs and will rapidly die unaided. Also, planned surgery, where the patient will go very deep & so their breathing rate and tidal volume will fall off a cliff. Or, if in such traumatic agony that deep sedation is necessary (50% burns for example, or multiple severe injuries and compound bone fractures).
They’re complicated things, are ventilators. There are many controls. Rate & volume are the simplest, but pressure, rate of inflation, the relationship between pressure and flow rate (“compliance”) are all vital. Also, you control exhalation, not just turn off at the end of every inflation. Finally, you don’t allow complete emptying, because the walls of the small airways can collapse and start to stick to each other, raising resistance to inflation and lowering compliance. All the time, you’re measuring blood gases, not only oxygen but CO2 as well as pH, concentration of different salts like sodium, potassium, chloride, etc.
You don’t just let anybody “fly the patient”. Not if you want them back.
So I’m just a PhD so what do I know?
I’m searching for a brave intensivist. Maybe a consultant anaesthetist.
Watch this space.
They already know, but most of the public doesn’t.
When they learn that mass mechanical ventilation has been widely used in countries with “advanced” medical systems, I’m hoping they’re going to be as seethingly angry about it as I am.
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