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Months after initial coronavirus infection, patients suffer lingering effects

Published: Jul. 14, 2020 at 12:31 PM CDT
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(CNN) - Every day, more is being learned about the coronavirus and its impact on people. Some people who have been battling the virus have been feeling the effects for months.

“March 15 is when I became ill, and the symptoms were like a searing, hot pain throughout my chest or my lungs and like a heavy feeling upon my chest, fevers, still have no sense of taste or smell at all,” said Melanie Montano, who has been sick with COVID-19 for over 90 days.

That’s more than three months of symptoms after she was diagnosed with coronavirus, and she’s not alone.

According to Johns Hopkins University, while those with milder cases of coronavirus will feel better within one to two weeks, for more severe cases, it could take six weeks or more. For approximately one percent of those infected, it can be fatal.

“I am asthmatic so that does render me higher risk.” Montano said. “I am 32 years old, so one would think I would have been able to kick the virus at this point three months later.”

Experts said they're learning that this lasting impact and other health problems are trademarks of the virus for some patients.

“The problem with coronavirus is even once the virus is gone, it has created a lot of damage so people could end up with additional pneumonia, bacterial pneumonia, strep, staph and so on as a consequence of the damage done to their lungs,” said Dr. Celine Gounder, an infectious diseases specialist.

Copyright 2020 CNN. All rights reserved.

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