THD Discusses Complications For Some After COVID-19 Recovery

Wednesday, July 8th 2020, 5:58 pm
By: Amy Slanchik

TULSA, Okla. -

More than 13,000 Oklahomans have recovered from COVID-19, but not everyone's recovery looks the same.

Tulsa Health Department Executive Director Dr. Bruce Dart said during a news conference, that for the most part Tulsa County patients are seeing a "pretty clear" recovery but shared a complication he recently learned about.

"Two days ago, I talked to a marathon runner who can't run right now. Someone in that 35-year-old age group, so the complications have really been around lethargy, and respiratory issues and lung capacity issues,” Dart said.

A doctor at a hospital in Spain told Reuters "between 15 and 45 percent of patients with COVID have some type of complication" after recovery, saying some patients leave care without any problems, but others can no longer walk or talk, and sometimes have memory loss and anxiety attacks.

The report said those issues are particularly with those who spent a long time under sedation.

Dr. Michael Ward, who works at the Utica Park Clinic in Glenpool, told News On 6 about his complications a couple weeks ago. He was doing physical therapy work to regain his balance after fighting COVID-19. He said he also lost nearly 50 pounds and hallucinated. After getting out of the hospital, Ward said he was left with neurological issues and blood vessel inflammation.

"That uncertainty is also something that has changed my life and I don't wish that on anybody because the whole thing was horrible for my family, horrible for me,” Ward said.

A doctor at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, who is an expert on lung disease, points to three factors that affect lung damage risk in COVID-19 patients: the severity of the infection, whether there are existing health problems and what kind of care a person gets.