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Colleen Huber, NMD6 July 2020

Are masks safe ?

This is only an Excerpt - Read the full test & studies here

 


During walking or other exercise

Surgical mask wearers had significantly increased dyspnea after a 6-minute walk than non-mask wearers. (30)

Researchers are concerned about possible burden of facemasks during physical activity on pulmonary, circulatory and immune systems, due to oxygen reduction and air trapping reducing substantial carbon dioxide exchange.  As a result of hypercapnia, there may be cardiac overload, renal overload, and a shift to metabolic acidosis. (31)

 

Risks of N95 respirators

Pregnant healthcare workers were found to have a loss in volume of oxygen consumption by 13.8% compared to controls when wearing N95 respirators.  17.7% less carbon dioxide was exhaled. (32)  Patients with end-stage renal disease were studied during use of N95 respirators.  Their partial pressure of oxygen (PaO2) decreased significantly compared to controls and increased respiratory adverse effects. (33)  19% of the patients developed various degrees of hypoxemia while wearing the masks.
 
Healthcare workers’ N95 respirators were measured by personal bioaerosol samplers to harbor influenza virus. (34)  And 25% of healthcare workers’ facepiece respirators were found to contain influenza in an emergency department during the 2015 flu season. (35)

 

Risks of surgical masks

Healthcare workers’ surgical masks also were measured by personal bioaerosol samplers to harbor for influenza virus. (36)
 
Various respiratory pathogens were found on the outer surface of used medical masks, which could result in self-contamination.  The risk was found to be higher with longer duration of mask use. (37)
 
Surgical masks were also found to be a repository of bacterial contamination.  The source of the bacteria was determined to be the body surface of the surgeons, rather than the operating room environment. (38)  Given that surgeons are gowned from head to foot for surgery, this finding should be especially concerning for laypeople who wear masks.  Without the protective garb of surgeons, laypeople generally have even more exposed body surface to serve as a source for bacteria to collect on their masks.

 

Risks of cloth masks

Healthcare workers wearing cloth masks had significantly higher rates of influenza-like illness after four weeks of continuous on-the-job use, when compared to controls. (39)
 
The increased rate of infection ins mask-wearers may be due to a weakening of immune function during mask use.  Surgeons have been found to have lower oxygen saturation after surgeries even as short as 30 minutes. (40)  Low oxygen induces hypoxia-inducible factor 1 alpha (HIF-1). (41)  This in turn down-regulates CD4+ T-cells.  CD4+ T-cells, in turn, are necessary for viral immunity. (42)

 

 

Sources & References

 

30 E Person, C Lemercier et al.  Effect of a surgical mask on six minute walking distance.  Rev Mal Respir. 2018 Mar; 35(3):264-268.
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29395560/


31  B Chandrasekaran, S Fernandes.  Exercise with facemask; are we handling a devil’s sword – a physiological hypothesis. Med Hypothese. 2020 Jun 22. 144:110002.
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32590322/


32
  P Shuang Ye Tong, A Sugam Kale, et al.  Respiratory consequences of N95-type mask usage in pregnant healthcare workers – A controlled clinical study.  Antimicrob Resist Infect Control. 2015 Nov 16; 4:48.
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26579222/


33
  T Kao, K Huang, et al. The physiological impact of wearing an N95 mask during hemodialysis as a precaution against SARS in patients with end-stage renal disease.  J Formos Med Assoc. 2004 Aug; 103(8):624-628.
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15340662/


34
  F Blachere, W Lindsley et al. Assessment of influenza virus exposure and recovery from contaminated surgical masks and N95
respirators. J Viro Methods.  2018 Oct; 260:98-106.
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30029810/


35
  A Rule, O Apau, et al. Healthcare personnel exposure in an emergency department during influenza season.  PLoS One. 2018
Aug 31; 13(8): e0203223.
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30169507/


36
  F Blachere, W Lindsley et al. Assessment of influenza virus exposure and recovery from contaminated surgical masks and N95 respirators. J Viro Methods.  2018 Oct; 260:98-106.
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30029810/


37
  A Chughtai, S Stelzer-Braid, et al.  Contamination by respiratory viruses on our surface of medical masks used by hospital healthcare workers.  BMC Infect Dis. 2019 Jun 3; 19(1): 491.
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31159777/


38
  L Zhiqing, C Yongyun, et al. J Orthop Translat. 2018 Jun 27; 14:57-62.
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30035033/


39
  C MacIntyre, H Seale, et al. A cluster randomized trial of cloth masks compared with medical masks in healthcare workers.  BMJ Open. 2015; 5(4)
https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/5/4/e006577


40
  A Beder, U Buyukkocak, et al. Preliminary report on surgical mask induced deoxygenation during major surgery. Neurocirugia. 2008; 19: 121-126.
http://scielo.isciii.es/pdf/neuro/v19n2/3.pdf


41
  D Lukashev, B Klebanov, et al. Cutting edge: Hypoxia-inducible factor 1-alpha and its activation-inducible short isoform negatively regulate functions of CD4+ and CD8+ T lymphocytes. J Immunol. 2006 Oct 15; 177(8) 4962-4965.
https://www.jimmunol.org/content/177/8/4962


42
  A Sant, A McMichael. Revealing the role of CD4+ T-cells in viral immunity.  J Exper Med. 2012 Jun 30; 209(8):1391-1395.
https://europepmc.org/article/PMC/3420330


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