"I just had a bout of vertigo caused by one of the crystals in my inner ear floating into the wrong position."
That happened to me a couple of years ago... in the middle of the night while I was sleeping. The room was spinning as if I were twirling around at top speed, but I was in bed. It was quite frightening and I wasn't even 100% certain I was awake; I thought I might have been dreaming. Vertigo is not a disease, but a symptom, and I had the same battery of test you did. I experienced symptoms for several weeks afterward, usually while bending over or something like that. The spinning would eventually subside leaving a headache in its wake.
Mine was caused by the same as yours: inner ear crystals. An ENT doctor can do a physical manipulation (like a puzzle in which the object is to manipulate a little B-B through a maze) in order to wedge that crystal in a spot where it won't cause further trouble. Sometimes it works itself into that sweet spot all by itself, which is what happened to me.
Six months later, the same thing happened on the other side. (The first set of spins was wildly to the left, whereas the second set was wildly to the right.) I went through the same pathology, but it eventually went away by itself after several weeks as well. I haven't had a spell since, and it's been several years.
I started a new job recently, and my new employer is very serious about COVID safety. Everyone -- students, faculty and staff -- must be fully vaccinated and boosted. Not only that, everyone must also get tested weekly, and the university provides multiple testing sites on its grounds.
Speaking of being on the grounds, everyone must also sign in, daily, on an app that has a function quizzing you on your symptoms: Do you have a fever, feel a cough, aches, chills, headache, etc.? Within the past two weeks, have you been in close contact with someone who has COVID, or traveled outside of the DMV* domestically or internationally? Have you tested positive for COVID within the past five days? Your answers to these questions gets you a green or yellow day pass to the campus, or a red pass saying stay the hell home.
Also, everyone must wear a mask at all times on the campus grounds, indoors or out.
Plus, everyone's workspace has a clear plexiglass shield extending four feet high, affixed to the front of the desk and the open side that isn't against the wall.
The Baron said:
Wow, that's strict. I suppose they have to be, though.
There's more: all employees are required to provide proof of vaccination and booster shots. I did that as part of the onboarding process, uploading the image of my vaccine card to the employee portal.
Word went out on Friday reminding all employees they were supposed to have done it by the end of January and to do it now if you haven't, or face discipline ranging from a warning to getting fired.
Yes, they are taking things seriously. Contrast that with the various places that are pushing for an end to mask mandates -- not because the number of cases have abated (in some areas they have, but in some they haven't and the threat of the omnicron variant and other variants still looms) -- but because people just don't feel like doing it any more. The other day, I heard a news report about this on the radio, and the reporter interviewed some state senator (a Democrat, for what that's worth) saying he was introducing a bill to end the mask mandate because people "just want to move on."
Imagine how things would be if our country dealt with polio, or measles by not doing things that help bring an end to the situation because people "just want to move on."
I just posted this quotation to another discussion, but it applies here as well:
"The two most common elements in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity."
I've had that same inner ear thing, and yeah, it lasted around 6 months. The vertigo -- and after years of posting about comics, it's really hard not to capitalize that -- generally only surfaced when I'd lie down on my bed...and suddenly my vision of the room would slide up and wobble like final motions of the cylinders of a slot machine.
A story we're seeing far too often.
From The Washington Post: "Chris Crouch Was Anti-vaccine. Now His Pregnant Wife Had COVID, and He Faced a Terrible Choice."
I tested positive, but I didn't feel a thing. Still don't.
As noted above, my employer provides weekly COVID tests. So last Monday, I dutifully took mine. Also noted above, my employer requires people to check in with their symptoms, daily, before setting foot on the grounds. But Tuesday, it wouldn't let me, instead taking me to a link with the university protocols. I didn't know what that meant, so I just went in to the office. Once there, I booted up my computer, signed in and signed in to email, and saw one with a link to my test results ... which (after I signed in) stated "POSITIVE FOR SARS-CoV-2."
Wha ... ?
So I dutifully signed out, shut off my computer and packed up to go back home ...
... and then realized I should tell my boss, so I unpacked, booted up my computer again, signed in again and sent her an email ... and signed out, shut down my computer and packed up again.
As I am supposed to be in the office at 8:30 a.m., I'm the first one in, so nobody was around. I went home and called my doctor, and his receptionist said to isolate for 10 days. Following protocol, I contacted my boss again, who subsequently contacted the provost's office and the health department ... who later contacted me with a survey I had to fill out asking what my symptoms are. I didn't have any.
I also sent a text to my wife and son. As it happens, my wife went out of town Sunday and was to return Tuesday, so she just went to my son's house for the week.
The university protocol is to either isolate for 10 days and return to a normal life if you don't have any symptoms -- which I didn't -- or wait five days and take a test. If it's negative and you don't have any symptoms, you can return to a normal life.
Every day last week, I got a text from the health department asking me for my symptoms, so each day I told them I didn't have any. On Saturday, I got a letter from them telling me I could end the isolation and go out into the world, provided I wore a mask all the time, at home or away, through the 15th.
We had plans for Saturday, so I went to a clinic in my neighborhood and took a test, which was negative, although I was told some people can get a positive result for up to 90 days after exposure.
I took my company test this morning and will get the results tomorrow, and if all goes well, I'll be free as a bird. However, I had occasion to interview my great grandboss (my boss's boss), and he told me about half the people who get re-tested after a positive result get a second positive result. Also, there is no rhyme or reason as to whether the second positive result happens with people who felt sick or people who had no symptoms at all (which, I didn't, and still don't).
We'll see what happens tomorrow ...
Oh, jeez, CK. I'm glad you're feeling well, but fingers crossed you can resume your life (and your wife can come home) soon. Good luck.
I'm back in the world! The result was negative.
(By the way, my wife is back home.)
On the other hand ...
From HuffPost: "Universities Bring Back Indoor Mask Mandates As Coronavirus Cases Rise Again"
My university never dropped the mask mandate, and the latest word is it will stay in place for the duration of the current semester.
My wife sang in a concert Saturday night, along with a large group of singers and instrumentalists (it was selections from Duke Ellington's Sacred Concerts). Monday we got an email saying one of the performers had tested positive on Sunday. CDC recommendations are that vaccinated people with a possible exposure wear a mask in public for ten days and get tested after five days, even if you don't develop symptoms. So we're hoping for the best, and we do have a supply of home tests.
One of my sisters-in-law has been in a choral group for years, but will not participate in its next concert because the conductor dropped the mask mandate for rehearsals and performance, leaving the choice of wearing a mask to each member's discretion.
At the next rehearsal, half the singers wore masks and half didn't.
She pointed out to the conductor the particular risks of people singing in groups (after all, one of the first and most well-known superspreader events happened with a choral group) and the latest guidance from the CDC, and was met with indifference.
A federal judge rules that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention overstepped its legal authority and strikes down its mask mandate on public transportation. From The Associated Press: "Florida Judge Voids US Mask Mandate for Planes, Other Travel"
The upshot is that the CDC can (and still does) recommend wearing masks, but cannot enforce it, so mask-wearing is pretty much discretionary.
This ruling, of course, caused a lot of confusion. Also from the AP: "Court Ruling Creates Mishmash of Transportation Mask Rules"
The Transportation Security Administration stopped enforcing the rule right away. The major airlines, which had been pushing for an end to the mandate, dropped the requirement quickly. The major airports are all over the place. The flight attendants' unions have mixed feelings about it; they want the masks on for their own safety, but are glad not have to referee fights from belligerent passengers who don't want to wear them.
The subway system in New York kept the requirement, but the one in Washington made it optional, although I noticed most people on my morning commute today had them on, as I did. Since the major value of the masks is to protect other people from your germs, and I personally had recently tested positive, I take it even more seriously than I did before.
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