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Covid-19 is Quite Unpleasant: A Personal Testimony

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My family had a rough Winter after moving to Wisconsin last year; adenovirus, common cold, stomach flu, influenza A & B strains, and now this.

About 7 days ago the entire family came down with flu-like symptoms Mixed with cold symptoms. Very weird illness, didn’t bother going for testing and just isolated. Sporadic spikes of fever, chest tightness, piercing headache, body aches, sinus drainage, dry cough, and sneezing. The kids were the first to recover, followed by me today, and my pregnant wife is starting to feel a little better.

We had been shopping in a town in Wisconsin where people are showing up sick with covid-19. I honestly believe that vastly more people are sick than what is being reported due to a lot of people just staying home like we have. I doubt it will be possible to contain this, and herd immunity will have to come into play if the vaccine they are testing isn’t successful. I pray it is.

What a super unpleasant virus. I’m grateful my broncheactasis and asthma didn’t result in me needing hospitalization. Using my cpap without humidifier really helped dry out my lungs each night.

I am glad you are all feeling better! Thank you for posting this.

I was surprised how quickly the virus hit. Faster than any illness I’ve had before. My lungs started to hurt like a pneumonia in less than 2 days.

I seriously think I had it (after my mother had it after she likely caught it from a Chinese tourist at work that she came into contact with who was super sick with severe respiratory symptoms at the beginning of January). Worst lower-chest pain/tightness, shortness of breath, constant (and I mean CONSTANT) dry cough, high fevers.

I am so glad you guys have recovered! We need to hear it. The fear of unknown is just building up.

I think it is the best for people in healthcare - to get it and get over it. So far the consensus is that there is immunity after the illness.

It’s lingering for my wife, but I keep feeling better today. Up until yesterday I felt very weak.. just like the flu. If we had not had both strains of flu this year I would have thought I had a cold and flu at the same time. 7 days from onset of symptoms to beginning of recovery for me. For reference, we are both 37 so pretty young still.

Edited by anewmanx

MunoRN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 10 years experience.

Since what you're describing is an upper respiratory tract infection it's unlikely it was Covid, but those URIs can hit people pretty hard and are no fun either.

Quote

Symptoms of COVID-19 are non-specific and the disease presentation can range from no symptoms (asymptomatic) to severe pneumonia and death. As of 20 February 2020 and
11

based on 55924 laboratory confirmed cases, typical signs and symptoms include: fever (87.9%), dry cough (67.7%), fatigue (38.1%), sputum production (33.4%), shortness of breath (18.6%), sore throat (13.9%), headache (13.6%), myalgia or arthralgia (14.8%), chills (11.4%), nausea or vomiting (5.0%), nasal congestion (4.8%), diarrhea (3.7%), and hemoptysis (0.9%), and conjunctival congestion (0.8%)

who-china-joint-mission-on-covid-19-fina

we had 10 of those symptoms. Better safe than sorry. Self Isolation for us.

Edited by anewmanx

tnbutterfly - Mary, BSN, RN

Specializes in Peds, Med-Surg, Disaster Nsg, Parish Nsg.

Thanks for sharing your story! Please keep us updated as all of you recover.

3 minutes ago, tnbutterfly - Mary said:

Thanks for sharing your story! Please keep us updated as all of you recover.

I figured hearing about recovery might be encouraging to some who are afraid. Especially all of you who are healthcare workers. It sucks, but the vast majority of cases will pass with time. Hope is a powerful thing.

CeciBean, ASN, RN

Specializes in MICU/CCU, SD, home health, neo, travel. Has 30 years experience.

I kind of wonder if that's what I had earlier this year. Symptoms were similar but not as severe. It lasted about a week. It was before this "wave" though.

MunoRN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 10 years experience.

3 hours ago, CeciBean said:

I kind of wonder if that's what I had earlier this year. Symptoms were similar but not as severe. It lasted about a week. It was before this "wave" though.

Mild to moderate cases are certainly similar to the various respiratory viruses that circulate this time every year, one thing that differentiates COVID is the duration of the symptoms, which is typically at least two weeks and up to 8 weeks.

13 minutes ago, MunoRN said:

Mild to moderate cases are certainly similar to the various respiratory viruses that circulate this time every year, one thing that differentiates COVID is the duration of the symptoms, which is typically at least two weeks and up to 8 weeks.

That sounds about right. I’m on day 8 of symptoms and I still feel like I’ve been hit by a truck, but I am no longer getting worse.

My wife still says she doesn’t feel any better, but at least the chest pain stopped.

reports say children seem to recover faster.

Edited by anewmanx

Update:

we still feel like dirt in day 9, but it was easier to breathe last night and I have some more energy now.

My primary care NP with the Department of Veterans Affairs had a nurse call in to check on my progress as I had notified them of my condition early on. Because of my history of lung problems and my symptoms I met the criteria for testing, but since we are getting better I declined so they could ration the tests for the more ill.

fun times! Stay safe out there.

Edited by anewmanx

Day 13:

My wife still feels horrible, and my chest is still feels sore. We thought we were getting better for like a day before we started to feel more chest/lung pain. This garbage lingers. At least the kids all got better. We don’t seem to be getting any worse, but not significantly better either. For everyone’s sake I pray to God they develop a successful vaccine ASAP. I don’t want to catch this again ever.

This has been real motivation to go to nursing school. I wish I could be out there helping others instead of just caring for myself.

Edited by anewmanx

Hi @anewmanx,

How do you know you have COVID-19? I get that the symptoms match up, but I don't know if that's enough to make a likely diagnosis. So far, most states have only been testing probable cases, the nationwide positive rate is about 13%. (33,277 positive tests /243,823 total tests https://covidtracking.com/data/). This means that, most likely, anyone with positive symptoms still probably does not have COVID-19. It sounds like you didn't get a test, so how do you know you have COVID and not some other thing going around?

In response to your previous post, taking care of yourself right now could be the best way you have to take care of others. Here's to hoping you a speedy recovery.

NRSKarenRN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Vents, Telemetry, Home Care, Home infusion. Has 44 years experience.

News stations reporting that virus in US hitting 20-59 harder. PA has 644 cases, most in 5 county Philly area.

Chester and Delaware Counties reporting coronavirus stats online bear out this trend: most cases under age 60.

DELCO:

https://chesco.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/bce5af8a6f454ee78e00b5adc67f4c4a

CHESCO:

https://chesco.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/975082d579454c3ca7877db0a44e61ca

Hope your wife has been in contact with her OB/midwife.

You might want to view the COVID19 symptom tracker which will tell you type of care needed if any based on ones symptoms + when to seek emergency care. Severe illness seems to peak around 3 week mark post exposure.

Hope you all recover soon.

31 minutes ago, NRSKarenRN said:

News stations reporting that virus in US hitting 20-59 harder. PA has 644 cases, most in 5 county Philly area.

Chester and Delaware Counties reporting coronavirus stats online bear out this trend: most cases under age 60.

DELCO:

https://chesco.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/bce5af8a6f454ee78e00b5adc67f4c4a

CHESCO:

https://chesco.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/975082d579454c3ca7877db0a44e61ca

Hope your wife has been in contact with her OB/midwife.

You might want to view the COVID19 symptom tracker which will tell you type of care needed if any based on ones symptoms + when to seek emergency care. Severe illness seems to peak around 3 week mark post exposure.

Hope you all recover soon.

Much appreciated. Last night she finally had a good nights sleep and at least looks better

I’m by no means a health professional, but in desperation to see what we could do to help her situation I ran across this article.

https://emcrit.org/pulmcrit/cpap-covid/

I figured use of CPAP might be why I was doing better than her. I had a second mask sitting around sanitized so my wife put the machine on 3 times yesterday at a pressure setting of 13 cmH2O, gradually for more time each time. Her lungs immediately hurt when she used it the first time and her skin color got better. Going to continue using it as a supportive treatment just in case. So far we both appear to be very gradually getting better. We were likely exposed during a long shopping trip surrounded by people in Brookfield, WI the 8th or when I was at appointments all day at the VA hospital in Milwaukee the 9th. The headache started 3 days later give or take. What a headache. Like a knife in your head.

I hope and pray all of you stay safe. You’re very brave facing something like this head on. God protect you.

Edited by anewmanx