Recovery from COVID-19 depends on a number of issues including severity of infection, age and other existing health conditions. Some can recover in as early as 12 to 24 days while some may take more than 30 days. Critical patients may find their recovery taking 12 to 18 months, far longer than expected.
Many can face mild breathing difficulties, lung problems, exhaustion from little physical labour and heartbeat irregularities walking a few steps. Lung damages take time to recover. The patient may do deep breathing exercises. A few more things should be noted.
Talk to the physician or chest specialist if you face oxygen shortage or breathing problems after recovering from COVID-19. You may require x-ray or CT scan. The physician may administer long term steroid or other drugs if you have fibrosis.
One can do deep breathing exercises under the supervision of an expert physiotherapist when some may require inhaler-like treatment. Once released from hospital, you may need blood thinners for two to four weeks as per the physician’s advice.
Those whose lungs get damaged, should not join work just after being released from hospital. It’s better to take complete rest for the first two weeks. A number of patients may have long term chest pain along with breathing complications. If required, do an ECG or echocardiogram and then consult a chest disease specialist.
*AFM Helal Uddin is a medicine specialist.