Shadows on the lungs, a cough, a clammy forehead. Most persons who are infected with the viral pandemic that is currently sweeping the globe will only develop a mild form of the mysterious ailment. Some people will be completely unaware that they have it. When it’s bad, though, it can assault the entire body, causing a raging fire in the lungs.

The outcome is determined by two crucial aspects in any invasion: the strength of your defenses and the severity (or dose) of the attack.

Connor Reed, 25, is familiar with the agonizing cough and high fever associated with COVID-19. He claims he contracted it in Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the initial outbreak. He still lives a 20-minute walk from the wet market, where the strain is thought to have spread from wild animals to humans.

Reed appeared to be suffering from a cold at first. He was already feeling better a week later, in early December, when he had a fever and cough. His entire body began to hurt. Another week has passed. He thought he was getting better until his cough got worse and settled at the bottom of his lungs. He, too, felt weighed down.

“It was difficult to breathe,” Reed recalls. “I felt like I couldn’t breathe just walking to the bathroom. It pained my ears and made me lose my equilibrium at times. It became terrifying, like the worst sickness I’d ever had.”

Reed ended himself in the hospital, where he claims physicians told him he had a “new kind of pneumonia” after a full day of tests. He was fortunate in that he was fit and healthy, and his life did not appear to be in jeopardy. Reed healed more than a month after his initial sneeze thanks to steroid inhalers that helped reduce inflammation in his lungs. Once he called the hospital in early January to inquire about his test results, they informed him of the news that would soon make headlines across the world – a new type of coronavirus had been discovered in people. Reed was one of the first people accused of being involved in the crime.

What do we currently know about COVID-19 and how the body reacts?

The virus is so little that it can’t be seen with the naked eye. It’s only nanometres broad. When someone is infected, however, they can shed the virus by coughing or sneezing viral particles into the air in water droplets from their nose and mouth. Viruses proliferate by using our own cellular machinery to infect a new host. They need the key — a receptor within a cell that they can bind to – to get in. Which cell a virus latches onto has a big impact on how far it spreads throughout the body — and how effective treatment is.

Only the nose and throat are colonized by the four primary coronaviruses found in humans. They cause one out of every four episodes of the common cold, with minor symptoms such as a runny nose, sore throat, cough, and fever. However, three dangerous coronavirus illnesses had emerged in humans since 2003: SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome), which sparked global panic when it first appeared 20 years ago, MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome), and COVID-19, which has infected over 3 million people and killed about 200,000.

All three assault the lungs and sinuses, occasionally leading to viral pneumonia – and because they’re new, our immune system is caught off guard, with no recollection of the virus. COVID-19 is roughly 75% identical to the SARS strain, so much so that it’s been dubbed SARS 2 or SARS-CoV-2, and it’s thought to bind to the same cell receptors (ACE2), which, it turns out, are abundant in the lungs.

According to Professor Sharon Lewin, director of the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity, early findings suggest that this virus is stronger at hacking into that receptor than SARS, which is why it is more infectious.

A CDC study backs up a COVID-19 reconditioning program.

CDC just released a significant clinical study on COVID-19’s long-term effects and the benefit of a recovery program. The study, which focuses on specific weaknesses in individuals recovering from COVID-19 and other severe illnesses and ailments, reveals that patients recuperating from COVID-19 may benefit from additional individualized rehabilitation therapies aimed at both physical and mental health. 1on1 Physical Therapy is uniquely qualified to manage the rehabilitation of patients recovering from COVID-19 with innovative physical therapy.

A recovery program was devised in collaboration with prominent clinicians, including pulmonologists, infectious disease experts, physical and occupational therapists, and speech-language pathologists, debuted in June 2020 in the midst of the pandemic. Our professional physical and occupational therapists constructed a plan of care to suit patients’ particular requirements and goals to return to their post-COVID activities and routine, using evidence-based program guidelines.

Some physical therapy clinics are “direct access,” meaning they don’t require a physician’s referral to receive treatment. If you or someone you care about in the Asheville, NC area is healing from COVID-19, CONTACT 1on1 Physical Therapy today!