When Michel Soge fell ill with COVID-19 last June, the symptoms attracted attention. “I was in bed, I was about to fall asleep and my hand just started to tingle. And I thought, “Oh, that’s weird.” And then my heart started beating faster and suddenly I couldn’t breathe, “she said. Soge, 25, a lover of running, hiking and the outdoors, was considered healthy. She felt worried. “That sudden feeling that my heart was breaking and I knew something was wrong was really scary,” said Soge, who works at the University of Arizona in Tucson. Soge went to the emergency room, thinking he might have a heart attack. At the time, Arizona was seeing a record number of positive cases of COVID-1
When Michel Soge contracted COVID-19 last June, symptoms caught his eye.
“I was in bed, I was about to fall asleep, and my hand just started to tingle. And I thought, “Oh, that’s weird.” And then my heart started beating faster and suddenly I couldn’t breathe, “she said.
Soge, 25, a lover of running, hiking and the outdoors in general, was considered healthy. She felt worried.
“This sudden feeling that my heart was lost and I knew something was wrong was really scary,” said Soge, who works at the University of Arizona in Tucson.
Soge went to the emergency room, thinking he might have a heart attack. At the time, Arizona was seeing a record number of positive cases of COVID-19.
It wasn’t a heart attack. She said doctors told her they suspected a panic attack and sent her home. However, the symptoms did not go away, so she returned and took a COVID-19 test. A few days later, she learned that she had tested positive for the virus.
Search for answers
Soge, who is still experiencing the debilitating effects of COVID-19, is part of a group of people called “long hauliers” – people whose side effects of COVID-19 continue and can make daily tasks a debilitating challenge. According to UC Davis Health, researchers estimate that approximately 10% of patients with coronavirus become long-term.
Long-term symptoms and their severity vary. Marina Oshana, a professor of philosophy at Davis University, said on a university website in December that her long-term side effects were problems with fatigue and breathing.
The condition affects both young and old people, from otherwise healthy people to those with underlying diseases. This may affect those who have been hospitalized with COVID-19 in patients with mild symptoms.
Eventually, Soge came to California with his father to seek care after life was no longer possible. (In some of her most difficult moments, Soge said she was so weak she had to crawl on the floor to answer the door.) Once in the Sacramento area, she was referred to the still-emerging health clinic. of UC Davis, created to help and learn about people like her.
Doctors at the clinic after COVID-19 examine those who have survived the virus but suffer from prolonged symptoms, which may include breathing problems, heart problems, fatigue, neurological problems and more. Their goal is to find answers to why some who become infected with the virus experience side effects that last for months.
For Soge, her main long-term symptoms are difficulty breathing and chest pain, along with fatigue and an inability to think clearly.
While at the clinic, doctors conducted numerous tests to find answers to Soge’s condition. They also developed a personalized care plan for Sogge. Now back in Arizona, she says she continues to use the treatment plan UC Davis Health has given her.
“I’m still limited to 90% of the things I could do before I got COVID. I would love to be able to go outside and walk around my house. I definitely know I can’t do it today, “she said.
As with Soge et al., Doctors have not yet been able to determine why her life was turned upside down by COVID-19. For most people, COVID-19 causes mild or moderate symptoms such as fever and cough.
“One general theory for patients with long-term symptoms of COVID-19 is that the virus probably stays in their bodies in some small form. Another theory is that their immune system continues to overreact even though the infection has passed,” said UC Davis Health in an article from December.
Soge is not sure how she contracted the virus. The only memory that comes to mind is going to a gas station and meeting someone who wasn’t wearing a mask.
She said she hoped sharing her story would motivate people to listen to science when it comes to wearing facials and social distance. She also hopes to help others become more aware of the potential long-term effects of the virus that do not lead to death.
“It is not a double choice to be alive and healthy or to be dead by COVID. We’re not talking about that here, “she said.” We are talking about all those messy things that long carriers face, where, yes, your life may not be over, but it can change in ways that are difficult to imagine and absolutely haunting. “
Soge says support from her family, friends and online groups has been key. And with so many people investigating COVID-19, she hopes that one day someone will be able to give her answers.
“There is so much research on this disease. There is so much attention on it right now, it’s such a big priority for so many different countries that I hope one day they will be able to understand that,” she said.
Do you have a story to share about your experience with COVID-19? Let us know at email@example.com.