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Woman suffers with lingering symptoms months after COVID-19 diagnosis

Published: Sep. 14, 2021 at 3:55 PM AKDT
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MONROE, La. (KNOE/Gray News) - Some people say they still have symptoms long after being diagnosed with COVID-19, including one Louisiana woman.

Eumekia Williams tells KNOE that her life changed in March when she tested positive for COVID-19.

She says she tested positive earlier in the day, but by midnight, she was on the ventilator.

Williams was on a ventilator for 17 days, which paralyzed her vocal cords and left her unable to talk. She was also unable to walk when she left the hospital.

She regained her voice and learned to walk again in rehab, but says she still has lingering symptoms.

“I have like memory fog. Sometimes, stuff that I’ve done in the past; I don’t remember doing it. Like, I’ll be talking to my husband and he’ll be like, ‘You remember doing this? We did that,’ and I’m like, ‘No,’” Williams said.

Dr. Suraj Jande from Ochsner Health System says doctors are still learning about the long-term effects.

“We are seeing a lot of neurological signs of people who report brain fog or haziness. There are cardiac complications,” she said.

Williams also struggles with cardiac complications now.

“I’m on a beta-blocker now because when I was on the ventilator, my heart rate got up to 198,” she said. “The only time it does it now is if I take the stairs. Going upstairs, like two or three stairs, and then I can tell it’s going to start racing.”

Jande said many long-term effects can depend on the severity of your case.

“However, on the caveat of that for people who have mild COVID, we’ve also seen them have long-term symptoms such as issues with smelling, taste, heart problems of some sort,” said Jande.

Doctors say time and research are needed to know the full impact of COVID-19.

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