• Doctors start to see emerging patterns on how coronavirus symptoms manifest
  • They described it as starting off with minor physical complaints then worsen
  • One expert said that when symptoms deteriorate after feeling better, it's time to contact a doctor 

Coronavirus affected hundreds of thousands of Americans all across the United States. Because of the high number of patients, doctors start to see patterns, especially on how the coronavirus symptoms manifest in patients.

Minor Complaints That Worsen

Doctors who have dealt with various COVID-19 patients compared “notes” and, as per NBC News, the general observation was that the symptoms start with minor physical complaints. These include headache, low-grade fever, and a slight cough. From these minor complaints, it will just get worse.

Dr. Joshua Denson, a critical care physician at Tulane Medical Center, New Orleans, revealed that patients usually experience symptoms for about a week. After hurdling this period, they would either improve and get better or get really sick. After treating between 15 to 20 coronavirus patients, Denson described this first phase of the symptoms as “a slow burn.”

Denson’s observations were also shared by other physicians who saw similar progressions with COVID-19 patients. Another doctor, a pulmonologist and working at the critical care department at the National Jewish Health in Denver, Dr. Ken Lyn-Kew, described the phase like a period where the body is trying to sort out whether it may be able to beat the virus or not.

coronavirus symptoms start as a lingering slow burn then worsens
Coronavirus symptoms start as a lingering slow burn then worsens. Engin_Akyurt - Pixabay

A Sudden Drop

Dr. Lyn-Kew noted that they had seen patients who would get better before they would start to deteriorate quickly. According to the doctor, patients will be doing okay; then suddenly, they would start to feel so fatigued, experiencing more shorter breaths and chest pains.

The account of Dr. Lyn-Kew is not a far cry from what Dr. Christopher Ohl from North Carolina saw in his patients. Dr. Ohl, an infectious disease expert, has also seen rapid, unexpected development of severe symptoms. He said that when this happens, patients get hospitalized.

He described instances where patients would tell him that they would be getting over the disease, then without warning, within 20 to 24 hours, they will start to experience severe fatigue, fever, shortness of breath, and worsening cough.

Common Conditions And Symptoms

Dr. Denson reiterated previous findings that the elderly and those with underlying health conditions were at a higher risk. He said that most of his critically-ill patients had a combination of three health conditions, namely, high blood pressure, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.

While deaths and severe cases do occur, they are not considered as the norm. Coronavirus cases data from China and Europe showed that out of the total number of patients, 80% suffered from a mild form and recovered. Still, doctors continue to remind people to be aware of any new symptom, especially those who are at a higher risk for complications.

"If your symptoms start to get worse after you've been feeling better, then you need to contact your doctor. That's probably something that doctors need to treat in an emergency," said Dr. Ohl.