A fit and healthy 30-year-old woman has shared her experience of falling ill with deadly Covid-19 after she had to be rushed to hospital.
French woman Intan Clement said she was diagnosed with coronavirus after she began coughing so badly she was left gasping for breath.
She told Yahoo News Australia her symptoms began with a light, dry cough and became progressively worse.
Intan has shared her story of contracting the virus as a warning to other young people as experts around the world urge people not to complacent because of their age.
The dual French and Australian citizen, who lives in Paris, said she is healthy and does not smoke, so at first thought her symptoms were nothing serious.
The young woman said she could barely breathe without coughing
The model and photographer said her partner had been ill a few days beforehand with a fever and headaches, so she thought she had caught a mild illness from him.
She then went on a weekend trip to a French ski resort in Vallorie.
Intan and her friends were on the slopes the day before French President Emmanuel Macron ordered the country to go into a nationwide lockdown amid the coronavirus crisis.
The most common symptoms of the coronavirus are:
- a dry, persistent cough
- a fever
If you experience these symptoms, you should immediately self-isolate yourself for seven days.
It is not necessary to call NHS 111 unless your symptoms get more severe.
Some patients have reported fatigue, headaches, shortness of breath and aches and pains. Sneezing is not a symptom of the coronavirus.
She told Yahoo News: “It got very difficult at times to breathe while skiing and my body got quite tired but I assumed it’s because I haven’t skied in 10 years and I’m not really fit,” she said.
She said she spent the day resting at her resort accommodation, but drove home the following day as France’s rail network descended into chaos ahead of the March 16 lockdown.
Intan Clement, 30, first noticed her symptoms about two weeks ago
Intan said she could barely breathe without coughing.
Medics came to her Paris apartment, but decided she should do a video conference with a doctor.
The doctor then prescribed her paracetamol and suggested she may just have the flu.
Within four days of the lockdown beginning she still couldn’t breathe properly, so made an appointment to see a doctor in person.
Intan managed to walk to the appointment, but said she had almost no energy as she suffered from full-body aches with any movement leaving her exhausted and coughing/
“I was sweating so much because my cough was so intense. My abs and most of my body couldn’t stop contracting,” she said.
The area around the Eiffel Tower is eerily empty as Paris goes under lockdown
(Image: Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
She said she was coughing and crying for days from the pain,and the doctor signed papers for her to be admitted to hospital.
Intan was taken to the emergency department where she received blood tests and lung scans, and had since been put on respiratory oxygen support, and a drip.
She has remained in hospital since March 20 and has not been allowed visitors.
Intan said she expects to be discharged in coming days.
She told how she believed her age and good health led medical staff to not take her symptoms seriously for days.
The usually busy Arc de Triomphe is seen empty following France’s lockdown
(Image: Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
She listed her symptoms including fatigue, fever, cough, trouble breathing, no sense of taste or smell, and headaches.
Intan continued: “Everyone kept saying before that it was nothing, I was getting better, that it can’t be the COVID-19. I assume because no one wanted to think about that and also wanted to reassure me normally young people don’t die from it or don’t go much to the hospital.”
She added: “I just really want people to take it seriously for everyone. As the doctor said, out of 10, four will carry the virus and be asymptomatic. Four will have it with a few symptoms and 1.5 will be like me and require to go to hospital. And 0.5 will end up in intensive care.
“People are to be aware and behave.”
Elderly people and those with underlying conditions have been warned they are at the greatest risk of severe Covid-19 sickness.
A passerby wears a protective face mask, in front of a closed Adidas store, at Avenue des Champs Elysees
(Image: Getty Images)
But many fit and healthy young people around the world have come forward to share their stories of falling so unwell they had to go to hospital.
And in the UK, a 21-year-old woman became what was thought to be the first young, healthy person without serious underlying health conditions to die from the disease.
Chloe Middleton, from High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, a “beautiful and caring’ care home worker, whose family said she had mild asthma, died at home after being turned away by overstretched paramedics, the Mirror revealed.
And Londoner Jozef Wallis, 40, earlier this week told how he got so sick he had to be taken into intensive care as he battled Covid-19.
The fit and healthy dad-of-two witnessed tragedy on the coronavirus ward, as two patients died from the illness in front of him.
By yesterday a total of 578 people had tragically died from coronavirus in the UK.
On day four of the UK lockdown, a spike in deaths of 113 was announced.
The country’s total confirmed Covid-19 cases yesterday stood at 11,658, up from 9,529 on Wednesday.