COVID-19: Combating Corona

Ebeth | 7:32

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"By the time I went to bed, I had a temperature of 103 degrees."

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Surviving COVID-19

Coronavirus Flu FeverSinuses Nasal Swab Sudafed Flonase Excedrin Airborne

Story Transcript

I live in Seattle. I'm 37 years old. I recently found out on Saturday that I was diagnosed recently during an illness of having Covid19 or having contracted the Coronavirus. So I'll tell you my story. So I, just like any other person in their mid thirties, have a very packed calendar. I'm single. I'm a social butterfly. I got invited to a party on Saturday, February 22nd. It was a cocktail party. I went there with a group of friends who ranged in age from our mid thirties to our early fifties. I went to the party, it was a potluck. People brought food. We laughed. We chatted. We socialized. We had beer, wine, cocktails, ate food. Three days later, on Tuesday, February 26, I woke up in the morning and I'm feeling a little groggy, a little tired. I thought maybe I might be coming down with something, but I also thought, I've done a lot of things this past week, and I've been very busy. I had a lot of social engagements that I went to and met a lot of friends. Maybe, I'm just tired. I went to the office as usual and thought I would kind of take it easy and come home early. But lo and behold, about midday I started feeling unwell. I had the general feeling that we always do that there is a cold coming on. I started feeling tired, headache, a little bit of a bodyache, a feeling like I'm getting a fever. I went home. I worked from home the rest of the day and I took a nap. I woke up. I had a temperature of 101 degrees. By the time I went to bed, I had a temperature of 103 degrees and I was visibly shaking and shivering. At that point, I was a little bit concerned, but my first thought was not Coronavirus, actually, because I did not have a cough. I didn't have any respiratory symptoms. I didn't have any tightness of my chest, shortness of breath and no respiratory distress. Nothing like that. It honestly felt like I was coming down with the flu. I always get a flu shot every year. I got a flu shot at the beginning of the flu season. So last year on September. But as we all know, the flu shot doesn't cover every stream of the flu. And so I thought that perhaps I'd just contracted a different flu strain than the one that I was vaccinated against. Yeah, the next morning I woke up, I had 101 degree fever and again, I just figure that I had contracted the flu. Started taking over the counter medications and thought that I would get well.

Now, how I ended up submitting a sample to the Seattle flu study is kind of an interesting story. So, you remember the party that I talked about earlier? So, it turned out that unbeknownst to me, many other people, about a dozen of us, in fact, by my count, there may be more, had all come down with a similar ailment on the same exact day as me. With very, very similar symptoms. And how I found out about this is, one of the friends who was at the party had posted on Facebook that she was feeling unwell and asked if anyone else had the same symptoms and lo and behold, a bunch of us who were at the party all replied, saying, Yes, I have the same symptoms as you and it all happened on Tuesday, February 25th, 3 days after the party. Some of these friends went to the doctor and the doctor thought that they had flu. They were tested for the flu. The flu test came back negative, so they were sent home, told to basically do self-care. Drink lots of water, rest, take over the counter medicines and to come back to the doctor if they were feeling more poorly. So, after a few days of this and of us all being sick and exchanging information back and forth of our different symptoms, some of the people in the group were getting a little frustrated that they hadn't been tested for the Coronavirus. We were starting to wonder if that could be what it was. So, at that point, that's when one of my friends, who was at the party who had also fallen sick, posted about the Seattle flu study and said, Hey, guys, there's a research study, they're collecting samples from volunteers, they're testing for strains of the flu. They're still testing for strains of the flu, but they're testing for Covid19 for the Coronavirus. I signed up. It's very easy to sign up and it's free. Why don't you consider doing it, too? So I signed up. So I went online to the website. I answered some questions about how I was feeling, and then I qualified for the study based on the answers to the questions. They mailed me very quickly, actually they sent it by courier because I live close to the University of Washington, a nasal swab test. So, that very day I took a nasal swab sample, and I put it in the tube with preservative liquid. And this was on Sunday, March 1st. I mailed the kit off the very next day, comes with a prepaid box and a plastic bag that you put the box in and I mailed it off. And I assume they probably got it sometime mid last week. And so they probably tested it by Friday or this past Saturday when I got my result. So that is actually the story of how I got the positive test results for the Coronavirus Covid19. And to be perfectly honest with you, if I had not voluntarily signed up for that study, I don't think I would have ever known that I had Covid19 or the Coronavirus because, honestly, to me, the illness felt like a very severe cold or a flu.

Now, you may be asking what I did to help myself get better or recover. There was no magic wand per se. I definitely used all those tried and true methods. I diligently and every time, every six hours, I took a dose of extra strength Excedrin, that's what I happened to have on hand at the time. Towards the middle of my illness, I started getting congestion in my sinuses and in my nasal passages, so I started taking sudafed. I used the neti pot with purified water. That's very important. Don't ever use the neti pot with anything other than purified water or tap water that has been boiled. I also used Afrin nasal spray to open up my nasal passages. And I have problems with my sinuses, in general. So I used flonase, which is another basically topical decongestant that opens up your nasal passages. I also took vitamins every day. I really enjoy using airborne. There are generic versions of it as well. You just put it in a glass of water and it dissolves and has a lot of vitamins and other herbs that are thought to be beneficial for the immune system to fight off infection. And I also just drank a lot of fluids, and I got a lot of rest. The time that I was ill, I literally slept really late in the morning. I got up, I had a late breakfast. I slept again and then I only really had a dinner. I really only had two meals a day, and I didn't really have any energy to even cook. I ordered out a lot, and then I fortunately, had a bunch of TV dinners. So I reheated up some TV dinners.