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Coronavirus: They avoided hospital but they still aren't getting better

Extreme fatigue, nausea, chest tightness, severe headaches, "brain fog" and limb pains are among the recurring symptoms described by some sufferers of COVID-19 for weeks - and even months - after their diagnosis.

They call themselves "long-haulers" and their symptoms persist long after the 14-day period that's officially said to be the average length of the illness.

There are calls for both health professionals and employers to recognise that some people will take a lot longer than two weeks to recover.

"It's the weirdest thing I've ever experienced," Helen Calder, from Liverpool, told BBC health correspondent Dominic Hughes.

Nearly four months after she and her family caught the virus, she still experiences a relapse roughly every two weeks where she is hit by debilitating fatigue, nausea, headaches and limb pain. Her doctors have diagnosed Post Viral Fatigue and she says any small over-exertion while she is feeling well can set her back for days at a time.

Dr Jake Suett, an intensive-care doctor in Norfolk, who was himself ill for several weeks, wrote an open letter calling on the government to push for more research into long-haul symptoms, and also to raise awareness among not only health professionals but also employers, who may see their staff off work for longer than two weeks.

"These patients may require financial help, and their employers need to have a realistic expectation for the time it will take them to recover," he wrote.

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Source: 7 July 2020

Read Jake Suett's blog on the hub


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