A few days later, her husband got sick and tested positive. Then her kids began exhibiting symptoms, although the doctor wouldn’t test them.
They all quarantined at home, hoping to get better in a few weeks. Though Berz’s husband and children recovered, she got worse.
Throughout her illness she experienced gastrointestinal, cognitive and pulmonary symptoms. She had asthma attacks, lost her sense of smell and had a burning sensation in her arms, also known as neuropathy.
‘Long haulers’: Long-lasting COVID-19 symptoms from lungs to limbs linger in coronavirus patients
Doing so could put a patient in bed for the whole day.
Joel Hough, 56, of Northern Virginia, still suffers from intense fatigue after getting sick in late April. He used to ride his bike every day, but now after riding just two hours at 30% of his original speed and intensity, he feels like he got hit by a truck.
“You have to meter yourself and then wait a day or two and then see how good or bad you feel,” he said. “You can feel so great, but you’re actually hurting yourself.”
Although patients such as Hough and Berz still experience symptoms and can’t function at their full capacity, thanks to the boot camp, they have hope. They encourage other long haulers to not give up.
Greenspan is grateful he can help his patients get back a slice of their former life, even if it’s just an extra minute on the treadmill.
“When somebody is diagnosed with a chronic disease … their lives become the disease, or the disease becomes their lives,” he said. “You are not your disease.”
Follow Adrianna Rodriguez on Twitter: @AdriannaUSAT.
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