A US scientist who spent six months on the verge of death after contracting the coronavirus in China has described his ordeal as “traumatic” and described how he struggled to return to work.
A report by the National Institutes of Health found the scientist, Stephen Fry, was exposed to a strain of the coronivirus that caused his lungs to burst and caused a condition known as pulmonary embolism, which could lead to death within days.
Fry, who had previously received medical treatment in the US, had travelled to China to treat a rare form of lung cancer, but the virus soon became too infectious to treat.
In a series of tweets on Monday, Fry said he felt he was going into a “death spiral” but was still alive.
He described his initial symptoms, which included chest pain and fever, as “tremendous”.
Fry said he was “so glad I didnt go to hospital”.
“My doctor was so adamant I should stay at home.
He told me that I would die if I went to hospital.
It was terrifying.”
I was in hospital for nine days.
I was so scared.
I felt I was dying, I had no energy, I was dehydrated and the temperature was really low,” he said.”
So, I went home to my wife and said, ‘I can’t go home.’
“Then, my wife called me and said I’m OK.
I’ve been through hell, I’ve had everything.”‘
Tremendously difficult’Fry has been described as a hero by Chinese state media.
He said he spent more than a year in hospital, including a three-week stay in isolation, as doctors battled to control the virus.
“This was a very traumatic experience for me, but I was also incredibly lucky that I did get to see people in the hospital, people I love, my colleagues, and even my family,” he tweeted.
Fries family have also praised him for his resilience.
He tweeted: “My family, the Australian government and all the people who have worked so hard to protect me are truly grateful for the support we received, but also for the courage to make this journey, to have the courage of our hearts, and to do what it took to stay positive and keep going.”
“The doctors and nurses that cared for me in China were so wonderful, so kind and patient,” he added.
Frys work with a team of scientists who work on experimental vaccines, including the vaccine developed to contain the coronovirus.
“We are the world’s best vaccine, the only vaccine that has ever been shown to work, and we are working to bring it to the US in 2021,” Fry said.ABC/wires