While most people with COVID-19 get well and go back to feeling normal after the infection, some can have symptoms that last for weeks or even months after recovery: coughing, tightness in the chest, shortness of breath, loss of taste and smell, headaches, muscle aches, brain fog and gastrointestinal issues.
I am one of those. I had a mild case in mid-December (on only one occasion I had to go to the hospital after a high blood pressure spike) and felt fine after a couple of weeks.
Unfortunately, about two weeks ago, I developed tightness in my chest and shortness of breath and had difficulty walking short distances without feeling short-winded. I had no idea this could be related to COVID-19, so after going to the emergency room because it was getting harder to breathe, I was diagnosed with pulmonary embolism with signs of heart strain and mild enlargement of the main pulmonary artery. I will now need to be on long-term blood thinners to prevent more blood clots from forming in my lungs.
I’m sharing my story to let others know how COVID-19 is not, as many believe, just like the common flu. COVID-19 can have long-term repercussions for people’s health. I’ve talked to quite a few friends who have decided not to get vaccinated, and even though I respect their decision, I can’t understand the reasoning behind it. It is true that this doesn’t happen to everyone, but research shows that about 30% of patients, including young children, have reported at least one symptom from the disease that persisted months later.
It isn’t worth risking you or your family’s health and quality of life. Please get vaccinated as soon as you’re able.
Silvia Gray Eddington