CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - Two weeks of quarantining at home with COVID-19 symptoms can be unsettling, and for some people, those symptoms last months.
The CDC calls post-COVID symptoms long COVID. It can include a range of symptoms that last weeks or months after a positive test.
“It is really worrisome, just because I’m not sure what’s gonna happen next,” said Abbi Hall, who tested positive for coronavirus last December.
Hall’s positive test marked just the beginning of the virus’s impact on her health.
“Some residual smell symptoms, some headaches, some blood sugar issues, some tiredness,” she said.
Hall said the most annoying symptom is the change to her sense of smell.
“Anything that has a very strong smell, all smells the same. So, toothpaste and gasoline, and bathroom smells, bananas, it all smells like sulfur to me. So, it’s really disorienting,” she said.
“Knowing how long it’s gonna last is a bit of a guessing game,” said Dr. Jeff Ripperda with Shawnee Health Center.
According to Dr. Ripperda, there are not many answers about long COVID. He sees patients with symptoms lasting for a few weeks to months.
“It doesn’t seem to select people of a certain age. It doesn’t necessarily seem to matter how sick somebody got with COVID,” he said.
He said most of his patients with long COVID have brain fog and fatigue.
“There’s some research going on to see if anything helps with it, but unfortunately we haven’t found anything as of yet that seems effective in terms of improving the symptoms,” said Dr. Ripperda.
“If something health related pops up in my life, I’m always like is this new or is this COVID related? I have to be really cognizant to take care of myself, now that I’ve had COVID. Cause I’ve noticed a huge difference in my blood sugars levels, and I really want to make sure I’m healthy and staying healthy for my family, and it’s just a lot harder now that I’ve had COVID,” said Hall.
The CDC and health experts are researching why and how some people experience long COVID. But right now, scientists do not have answers.