Infected doctor live-tweets symptoms
A doctor battling coronavirus has been giving his social media followers an honest insight into his daily symptoms after he tested positive to coronavirus while treating patients with the infection at a hospital in Spain.
Dr Yale Tung Chen, who works as an emergency physician at Hospital Universitario La Paz in Madrid, began live-tweeting the disease's symptoms on Monday as it took hold of his body.
The 35-year-old shared ultrasounds of his lungs and kept an online diary of his aches and pains while being quarantined in his Madrid home.
"Day 1 after #COVID diagnosis. Sore throat, headache (strong!), Dry cough but not shortness of breath. No lung US abnormalities. Will keep a #POCUS track of my lungs," Mr Chen wrote on March 9.
"Day 2 … Less sore throat, cough & headache (thank God!), still no shortness of breath or pleuritic chest pain. #POCUS update: small bilateral pleural effusion, thickened pleural line & basal b-lines (plaps)."
By day three, the doctor no longer had a sore throat or headache, but began experiencing diarrhoea.
"Yesterday was cough day, still no shortness of breath/chest pain. Diarrhoea started, lucky cough got better. #POCUS update: similar effusion, seems less thickened pleural line + no b-lines (PLAPS)," he explained.
Day 1 after #COVID diagnosis. Sore throat, headache (strong!), Dry cough but not shortness of breath. No lung US abnormalities. Will keep a #POCUS track of my lungs. #coronavirus @TomasVillen @ButterflyNetInc pic.twitter.com/wLtSc70pxQ— Yale Tung Chen (@yaletung) March 9, 2020
On Friday (day four) his cough intensified and he began to feel tiredness "very badly".
"Still no dyspnoea/chest pain. #POCUS update: Right side on resolution, Left side a more thickened pleural line + 2 subpleural consolidations," Mr Chen said alongside a live ultrasound, comparing the right and left side of his chest.
The Spanish doctor told LBC News that at the end of his shift last Friday he started to feel unwell.
"In that moment, I wondered if it could be coronavirus, but did not have any epidemiological contacts to justify my fear," he told the publication.
It was "the slightest threat" to his wife and children that pushed him to get tested.
He said he felt "relieved" when that test eventually came back positive on Sunday.
"From that moment on, I had myself isolated in a room in my house, and avoided any contact with anybody in the house.
"That is probably the most anxious part - to not be able to be with my family, my kids, at this moment."
Mr Chen said he wanted his experience to be educational, but told NBC News he wasn't expecting such as compassionate response from social media users.
Day 3 after #COVID diagnosis. No sore throat/headache. Yesterday was cough day, still no shortness of breath/chest pain. Diarrhea started, lucky cough got better. #POCUS update: similar effusion, seems less thickened pleural line + no b-lines (PLAPS). #mycoviddiary @TomasVillen pic.twitter.com/ycJfQNtLL8— Yale Tung Chen (@yaletung) March 11, 2020
"It meant the whole world to me to receive support from people all around the world," he told the publication.
The doctor's live diary and ultrasounds showing the progression of his symptoms have been viewed more than 500,000 times with many users sending well wishes.
Others have also thanked him for sharing his journey while he has been sick.
"Huge respect. Get well soon," one person wrote.
"Mate!!!! I hope you're OK....keep a diary and publish it. Along with your POCUS log. Please look after yourself! Thank god for your @ButterflyNetInc iQ," added another.
"Get well soon! I am an emergency Medicine specialist in Turkey. Your records are so important!" a third commented.
According to a report dated March 11 from the Bundeswehr Institute of Microbiology in Munich, researchers found the highest levels of virus to be in the throats of patients in the earliest stages of infection and before they feel unwell.
The study stated that this was when they were most likely to be walking about and coughing, spreading the virus.
Day 4 after #COVID diagnosis. More cough & tiredness (very badly), still no dyspnea/chest pain. #POCUS update: Right side on resolution, Left side a more thickened pleural line + 2 subpleural consolidations. #mycoviddiary @TomasVillen pic.twitter.com/KBUf084mkC— Yale Tung Chen (@yaletung) March 12, 2020
Symptoms for the virus, which are similar to that of the cold and flu, include a cough, fever, high temperature and shortness of breath and fatigue.
Following the World Health Organisation declaring the coronavirus a pandemic, doctors are urging Australians not to panic and flood medical centres with unnecessary testing.
Melbourne GP Dr Vyom Sharma told news.com.au that many Australians were confusing the common cold and flu for COVID-19.
"The only way to distinguish them is through testing. At the moment, we can only test those with symptoms who are in a high risk category," Dr Sharma said.
"For now, everyone else has a really tiny chance of having coronavirus compared to the cold/flu."
Dr Sharma advises those who fall into the high risk category - a recently returned traveller of 14 days or someone who has been in contact with a person known to have COVID-19 - should call the dedicated hotline if they are experiencing any of: fever, cough, shortness of breath, runny nose and sore throat.
"Do not physically attend a doctor until you have called ahead first," he said.
"Everyone else is low risk and should be handled like a normal visit to a GP, but you must call ahead of time, do not attend unannounced."