‘Caught it at a party’: A coronavirus patient gives first-hand account of being infected

Elizabeth Schneider revealed she had COVID-19 (Source: Elizabeth Schneider/Facebook)

Elizabeth Schneiderm from Seattle, Washington had been infected by coronavirus recently, completing 13 days on March 9, 2020, ever since the symptoms for the illness started, she revealed in a Facebook post. During a time when there is so much paranoia about coronavirus, Schneiderm went on to share a first-hand account of battling the virus.

"As of Monday March 9th, it has been 13 days since my symptoms started and more than 72 hours since my fever subsided," Schneiderm informed in a now viral post. She began the post by talking about how she got infected. "I believe I caught it when attending a small house party at which no one was coughing, sneezing or otherwise displaying any symptoms of illness. It appears that 40 per cent of the attendees of this party ended up sick. The media tells you to wash your hands and avoid anyone with symptoms. I did. There is no way to avoid catching this except avoiding all other humans. 40 per cent of folks were all sick within three days of attending the party all with the same/similar symptoms including fever," she wrote.

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According to Schneiderm, the symptoms of coronavirus could also vary with respect to constitution and age. She explained in the post, "Most of my friends who got it were in their late 40s to early 50s. I'm in my mid 30s. For us it was headache, fever (for first 3 days consistently and then on and off after three days), severe body aches and joint pain, and severe fatigue. I had a fever that spiked the first night to 103 degrees and eventually came down to 100 and then low grade 99.5. Some folks had diarrhea. I felt nauseous one day. Once the fever is gone some were left with nasal congestion, sore throat. Only a very few of us had a mild itchy cough. Very few had chest tightness or other respiratory symptoms. Total duration of illness was 10-16 days."

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Talking about how she got diagnosed, Schneiderm wrote, "I got tested through the Seattle Flu Study. This is a RESEARCH study here in Seattle and they have been testing volunteers for strains of the flu to study transmission within the community. A few weeks ago, they started to test a random subset of samples for COVID-19 infection. They sent my sample to the King County Public Health Department for confirmation; however, I was told that all of the samples that have tested positive in the research study have been confirmed by Public Health."

Schneiderm is taking precautions post-recovery too. "I am no longer isolating myself however I am avoiding strenuous activity and large crowds and I obviously will not come near you if I see you in public." Experts have indeed recommended avoiding too much physical contact like shaking hands or hugging to prevent the transmission of the virus.

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"I also truly believe the lack of testing is leading to folks believing that they just have a cold or something else going out into public and spreading it. And worse folks with no symptoms are also spreading it as in the case of a person attending a party or social gathering who has no symptoms," she further added. According to World Health Organisation (WHO), it takes between two to 10 days for the symptoms of coronavirus to show. And if you notice symptoms like sneezing, coughing and fever, it is best to seek medical attention as soon as possible.

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To reduce the risk of infection, doctors suggest one should follow the cough and sneeze hygiene — covering the mouth while doing so — and wash their hands thoroughly either with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitiser.