Some COVID-19 ‘long-haulers’ seeing symptoms last more than a year

ATLANTA — Some of those infected with COVID-19 have to deal with the symptoms for weeks, months and, in some cases, more than a year. These people are called long-haulers, as their symptoms stick around for a much longer time than the average case.

Cody Garrett, 27, of Fulton County got the coronavirus in December. He recovered quickly but developed light sensitivity and brain fog about a week after returning to work.

“I have trouble finding words or trying to complete a sentence without pausing,” Garrett said.

Dealing with symptoms of a virus more than a year later must be difficult for anyone that has that experience.

“I don’t know. Maybe a year from now, I’ll be back to where I was, but it scares me to death that I probably won’t be,” Garrett said.

Caroline Molyneux, 31, is also experiencing long-hauler symptoms after getting COVID-19. She started developing these symptoms about a month after getting COVID-19. She experienced labored breathing and a racing heart.

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“I started noticing I was running out of breath really easily,” Molyneux said.

“There’s a number of effects, and I don’t think we even know all of them, but that’s becoming more real phenomenon in talking to colleagues in Pulmonology and Critical Care,” said Dr. Douglas Olson, medical director of the Northside Forsyth Emergency Department.

There’s no way to predict who will develop long-hauler symptoms. It is impacting various age groups. Molyneux and Garrett are now vaccinated and encourage others their age to do so.

”Don’t take it lightly just because you are in your twenties,” Garrett said.