Part Two offers stories from vulnerable autoimmune and immunocompromised patients at risk of COVID-19 infection and self-isolating. Plus, several functional MDs that specialize in autoimmune share self-help tips for coping with the coronavirus pandemic.
In Part One we provided links to basic information about the COVID-19 pandemic.
My immune system is compromised. Don’t put me at risk!
Autoimmune and immunocompromised people, young and old, are at risk of more severe disease during the COVID-19 pandemic. These vulnerable young patients rightly resent being shrugged off as expendable by their healthier peers. But those peers are not as invulnerable as they think. In Italy, 50% of hospitalized patients with COVID-19 are under 50 years old.
This will be a serious illness for many, since humans had no herd immunity to the SARS-COV-2 virus. In fact, it will take a couple of seasons of illness and hopefully a vaccine before we do. Moreover, we do not yet know why the disease is mild in many and severe in few. Nor do we do yet know why some people, including some younger people, become gravely ill and require intensive care or die. Some previous healthy young people who got really sick share their stories.
The time for being cavalier or in denial about COVID-19 is past. However, many people (Spring Break, Mardis Gras, St. Patrick’s Day pubs, I’m looking at you!) seem to not have gotten the message. But see these stories from the front: healthy young people who got seriously sick.
Surprisingly, both Fast Company and NBC news (here’s a second one from an MS patient who lost her sister in the H1N1 pandemic of 2009) wrote stories about immunocompromised patients, illustrated with salient Tweets.
A reporter, isolated in his own home after travel because his wife has an autoimmune disease, writes about how his family copes.
Creakyjoints has created an excellent Q&A page about COVID-19 for autoimmune and immunocompromised patients, applicable beyond those with arthritis.
Washington State has been the hottest COVID19 outbreak spot in the US. Crosscut, an independent, reader-supported Pacific Northwest online news site, provides a local angle with advice that anyone can use.
Self-help resources and immune support ideas for autoimmune patients coping with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Drs. Susan Blum, Jill Carnahan, and Aviva Romm have years of experience as conventional and functional physicians with particular interest in autoimmunity. They bring their background and experience to offer advice for coping with the pandemic.
- Dr. Susan Blum offers tips to autoimmune patients:
Note: I’ve used NAC, and 900mgs would put me on the ceiling! If you are older or have never used NAC before, test a smaller dose before taking this big a plunge.
Your Autoimmunity Connection offers some additional tips:
- Tips and Tools to Conquer your Chronic Disease ,
- and a reminder to take care of your oral health during this time.
Let us know what useful information we can provide. If you have questions or any other new information to share, please comment below.