Young coronavirus patient shares her warning about taking virus seriously

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SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. — A young coronavirus patient is sharing her warning that no one is immune.

The patient is one of Shelby County’s latest reported cases. She wants to keep her name and face out of the media, but she shared what this last week has been like in a phone conversation with WREG.

“The first symptom was like a sore throat, and it was just a sore throat, and then a few days later it turned into a cough,” she said.

She said the coughing attacks would come about every 20 minutes, and the 26-year-old had no idea why they wouldn’t stop until she came home to Memphis from Washington D.C. this week for spring break.

 “No, I didn’t go to the doctor before I came,” she said. “I put a mask on, and I flew home.”

She went to Baptist East to get tested Tuesday. She was alerted Thursday night the test came back positive for COVID-19. 

“Since I wasn’t having any respiratory distress or anything like that, there was no need for me to be admitted to the hospital,” she said. “They just want me to stay away, avoid interacting with people.”

She doesn’t know if her regular exercise routine or her youth helps, but she’s thankful she hasn’t gotten sicker. She’s in isolation, and her family is quarantined.

“I’ve been like in my house for the past five days, and I’m mostly in my room,” she said. “If I do come out of my room, I put a face mask on. If I go to common areas, I have gloves on just to make sure I’m not exposing any of my family members.”

She is the second coronavirus patient around 20 years old who WREG has spoken with this week. Both said they are proof that young people are not immune.

“I don’t think that it’s wise to ignore what’s been recommended by the specialists,” she said. “I wish I had a warning like they do because maybe I could have avoided it somehow.”

She suffered a double-whammy. Her graduation ceremony scheduled for May was cancelled because of the outbreak, but she’s okay with it.

She said no one understands the importance of preventing the spread of this disease more than people who’ve had it.

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