12 News Investigates: Why it takes some a long time to recover from COVID-19

12 News Investigates

JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – Joey Wall stayed at Baptist Memorial Hospital for a total of 104 days after contracting the coronavirus.

Doctors at Baptist said they haven’t had a COVID-19 patient stay that length of time. They said they have had similar cases of people on ventilators, but their stays have been six weeks to four months.

Dr. Timothy Cannon, Physician of Pulmonary Care at Baptist Memorial, explained why it’s taken Wall so long to recover.

“Some of these patients require a lot of oxygen support on the ventilator, and they become dyssynchronous with the mechanical ventilation, and they have to be deeply sedated when they develop acute lung injury another terms is ARDS. So typically, they have to be deeply sedated,” he explained.

Dr. Cannon added, “We’ve been using a lot of paralytic drugs. In other words, we put them in a chemically induced coma, and with the paralytic drug, we use along with steroids which are indicated for COVID-19 pneumonia. A lot of times they will develop a critically ill neuropathy or muscle weakness or critical illness poly neuropathy, where they have damage to their nerves which also can effect their diaphragm, which will make it difficult to get them weaned off their mechanical ventilation.”

In the meantime, Dr.Cannon said if you test positive for COVID-19, contact your doctor to arrange a monoclonal antibody infusion. They can be given an hour at the hospital and are free of charge. Steroids can also given if your oxygen levels drop.

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