MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The misery of people who are sick with COVID-19 may last longer than first assumed. WCCO investigated the lingering symptoms that led to a new group of virus survivors known as “long-term sufferers”.
“Nine of us got sick with COVID-19, but no one got really sick except me,” said James Cha.
Doctors believe it was a family fishing trip in July that exposed 51-year-old James Cha to COVID-19. He spent six days in the hospital and went home with oxygen as he continued his struggle to breathe.
“I sank about three bottles of cough syrup in the last three weeks,” Cha said.
44 days since his diagnosis between this cough syrup, prescription and inhaler, he still does not seem to shake it.
“It feels like there̵
Cha has also noticed problems with his memory ever since. He is one of a growing number of people reporting illness months after a positive case of COVID-19.
One study said that as many as 75% of hospitalized patients experience long-term symptoms and fall into that long-distance category. The Minnesota Department of Health told WCCO that they are conducting specific follow-up and case management investigations to find out what might happen here.
“I think it really underscores why it is important that we take COVID so seriously. It’s not just the symptoms you initially have, it’s how the virus affects your health in the long run, ”said Kris Ehresmann, director of the Minnesota Department of Health Infectious Diseases, Epidemiology, Prevention and Control.
Cha plans to see his doctor again in a few weeks if he is not better.
“After a whole working day, I get really tired,” he also remarked.
As he hopes to be able to breathe easier.
“That’s right. COVID is genuine,” he added.
Researchers are also studying the role that blood type may play with COVID-19. In a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine, people with type “A” blood had a 50% greater risk of needing oxygen or a ventilator if they had the virus.
Cha told us that his medical staff also mentioned this and that he is “A” positive