On the front lines, here's what the seven stages of severe COVID-19 look likehttps://www.latimes.com/opinion/story/2021-08-26/pandemic-covid-19-stages-vaccination-intensive-care-respiratory-therapist?_amp=true&fbclid=IwAR268jf6Dndn97aXXIrJxagBsbO951iC3Z3w60EJRDmVbVbopiRJA7dxtpc
Great LA Times article. Scary
I have not seen this posted yet....
to read it to them.
Stage 7: After several meetings with the palliative care team, your family decides to withdraw care. We extubate you, turning off the breathing machinery. We set up a final FaceTime call with your loved ones. As we work in your room, we hear crying and loving goodbyes. We cry, too, and we hold your hand until your last natural breath.
Ive been at this for 17 months now. It doesnt get easier. My pandemic stories rarely end well.
In 32 years of radiologic technologist practice, I've never seen anything like COVID-- how destructive to lung tissue, how quickly it can completely infect a patient's entire lungs.
January 2020, I caught what I figured was just a bad flu, edging into pneumonia, despite flu inoculation. Only in retrospect did I discover what I'd suffered through. My old labrador had just had a tumor removed, we were laid up together. I absolutely could not move air unless propped up all night, 2 nights, completely exhausted 2 albuterol inhalers, keeping the phone charged and ready to call the ambulance. I was lucky, although my entire chest burned and I was so fearful of another heart attack. Here was the discovery in retrospect: I couldn't keep anything down and poor appetite was made worse because everything tasted like aluminum foil.
Despite a mild case, stage 1 edging into 2, it did plenty of damage. I felt like crap for over a year, 61 years old but very mild arthritis became visibly apparent and severely limited my ADL's. Mild, mostly seasonal and dust exposure asthma became daily medicated, completely inhaler dependent every day. The smoke from Napa valley fire exacerbated that.
Here it is, one year and nine months later. I'm only now, aside from asthma inhaler frequency, returning to something resembling my baseline. I'm on a final recovery attempt "sabbatical". Arguing with anti-maskers in the hospital 🤬 drove my blood pressure through the roof. In a bit over a month, I'm back to the front lines.
I think we all have lost count of the ways 2020 sucked.
We were down in Chinatown around NYE.
Worst flu, ever - of course I get the shot every year. Combined with a cough and congestion in my lungs that was unreal. I had run a half marathon a few weeks before and was training for my first full one. To me, everything tasted and smelled like when I used a concrete saw to cut bricks. Couldn't taste anything but that dusty, burned smell, for a couple of weeks. I was 59; I gather you live somewhere near me, I'm in Santa Rosa. I am finally back to being able to do 10K, but it took half a year....
That's what I do now, travel gigs, exclusively. I used to hold licensure in several southwestern states, but the 2010 job market crash rendered all western states but California a waste of money to maintain.
It's a total crap shoot where in the state I'll work next.