Jump to content

Menu

Do you know people who you think might have had Covid before Covid was a "thing?"


Recommended Posts

A co-worker was hospitalized for almost 2 months, on a respirator, almost intubated, and couldn't breathe, etc.....we think she had Covid in Jan of 2020.

My mother died in Dec of 2019 and it may not have been Covid, but it certainly included Covid like symptoms and she had an auto-immune that was pretty severe.

 

Edited by DawnM
  • Sad 5
Link to post
Share on other sites

No. I guess it’s possible but very unlikely.

January 2019, I think that goes against everything that is currently said about what they know about where it was and when.

There are plenty of other things that could cause someone to have respiratory failure, so while it’s tempting to wonder, I wouldn’t think it’s likely before winter 2019-20.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes. Late January, 2019 2020. Covid was already on my radar and I told my friend about it at that time. When her DH tested positive in late 2020 he said it felt exactly the same. He is a long hauler, still dealing with symptoms.

He works with people from around the world and had recently traveled before they got sick the first time. It didn’t seem unlikely to me then, despite what we were being told.

edited because time has no meaning any longer

Edited by MEmama
  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, MEmama said:

Yes. Late January, 2019. Covid was already on my radar and I told my friend about it at that time.

How can Covid have been on your radar in January 2019 when the first news reports didn't come out until December of 2019?
 

Edited by regentrude
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

DH was in Germany in Dec 2019, and brought a very nasty bug home.  6 weeks of horrible illness for all 4 of us.  Multiple flu and strep tests were negative.  Breathing treatments needed, and all the Covid symptoms one would expect.  I lost sense of taste and found eating very unappealing. We logged 6 trips to adult docs and I lost count of pediatric trips - more than 6 if we count emergency visits. It was utterly miserable.  I exclaimed to one doc, upon again hearing that strep and flu were negative, “But a virus?! We can’t be this sick from a virus?!” Ha.  Little did I know.

But ... I actually feel very skeptical that it was Covid. Immune compromised people among us would have been even worse off, I think.  What it did do was give me tremendous motivation to stay healthy, and to do what we could to not catch Covid.  I can’t even imagine how ill we’d be in that case.  I was probably over cautious just because I was afraid of the same thing happening again, or worse.

Edited by Spryte
  • Sad 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, regentrude said:

How can Covid have been on your radar in January 2019 when the first news reports didn't come out until December of 2019?
 

Because I made the same mistake previous posters did. 😬

  • Like 1
  • Haha 3
Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, regentrude said:

How can Covid have been on your radar in January 2019 when the first news reports didn't come out until December of 2019?
 

I am guessing she meant Jan of 2020?   Because that is what I meant!   Oops.   I changed it now.

Edited by DawnM
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Maybe in Dec 2019. We had family fly in and they became sick and then we got it too. It was pretty rough. Some people ended up with pneumonia. Several lost their voices. Pretty bad sore throats, headaches, tummy aches, fevers, coughs etc.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, DawnM said:

I am guessing she meant Jan of 2020?   Because that is what I meant!   Oops.   I changed it now.

OK, now the whole discussion makes finally sense.
I completely believe that folks may have Covid in January 2020  -but not a year before the Wuhan outbreak.

  • Like 1
  • Haha 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

My brother did a tour of Israel in February 2020. He came home, and he virtually sat in his chair for a few weeks. Breathing difficulties, no taste, no smell, horribly sick. He wouldn't let me come near him to help; he told me to leave groceries outside his door because he was so sick and he didn't want to share whatever he had. We don't know if what he had was Covid - Covid wasn't noticed in Israel until Feb 21 according to Wikipedia (which is approximately when his tour ended - 17th maybe?), but his group did include people from all over Europe and the US. 

Edited by historically accurate
  • Sad 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, first week of Feb 2020. My teen and 4 in the friend group. Flu-like viral illness with shortness of breath. Exposure to Chinese international students returned from winter break. All recovered within a few days. 
 

Just last month teen’s doc said it was likely covid, but no way to know for sure. 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes. The relative that’s a pharmacist had it (could tell because of strong antibody response to the first vaccine dose), and their spouse had diagnosed treatment resistant pneumonia and a blood clot in late January-early February 2020. Then the blood donor antibody studies came out that it was widespread in their area at that time.  

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

January 2020. Friend in 40s went to the hospital with some sort of virus. No exposure to anyone who travelled. Long recovery. 

DH went to India in Jan/Feb. He is a germa phone, carries hand sanitizer always during travel even before pandemic, washes hands constantly and wore a mask for pollution. He came back and had a slight cold, cough, took paracetamol. Not sure if it was COVID, did not test for anti-bodies. He and I did have a rather big reaction to the first vaccine as in chills, fatigue. DH had a slight temperature. 

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

We think dh may have had it in February 2020, before it was supposedly here.  The father of a co-worker had been on a cruise in late 2019 and had a heart attack.  They airlifted him to a hospital in China.  He came home with covid-like symptoms and infected his wife and son.  The son went to work and hacked all over his coworkers.  A handful got very sick.  Dh said it was worse than any flu he's had.  One of the co-workers who got sick was hospitalized.  DH had an antibody test done in early summer 2020, but it was negative.  Dh and all the co-workers who had gotten sick had been vaccinated for flu and none have gotten covid since.  In addition, his first moderna shot gave him flu-like symptoms for 10 days.  I've read that people who previously had it react to the first shot the way other people react to the second shot.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, annandatje said:

I know several people who *think* they had covid before covid was a thing.  As for whether they truly had covid, I have no idea.

Yeah, I do too.   The one that really made me think it was is the one who was hospitalized, on a vent, and they didn't know what was going on.   However, I visited her in the hospital several times and never got it, nor did others who visited, so it may not have been.  

Link to post
Share on other sites

My parents are pretty convinced that they had it around New Years 2020.  My dad worked at Fed Ex (In Indy) in Aircraft Maintenance.  So, he didn't travel internationally but obviously, he was handling and interacting with international cargo flights multiple times a day.  Right around the first of the year, something went through the maint. hanger.  Most of the people working there got it, whatever it was, and most were out for a few days.  Dad brought it home, whatever it was, to mom, and both of them were sick for over a week.  Our Christmas celebration (which was already pushed back for other reasons) was pushed back again to mid January. 

 

I don't know if they had it or not.  Because of the international flight frequency where my dad worked, I think it's more likely than other random folks who don't have such a reason to think they might have had it.  Having said that, I don't think they had it.  It has always been common for "a thing" to go through dad's work after the Christmas rush disappears. 

 

Dad retired this summer, around 4th of July. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, DawnM said:

Yeah, I do too.   The one that really made me think it was is the one who was hospitalized, on a vent, and they didn't know what was going on.   However, I visited her in the hospital several times and never got it, nor did others who visited, so it may not have been.  

In the case of my kid’s friend group, I would not have thought covid aside from the fact that my child has had pneumonia several times, and has asthma, and said the breathless feeling was totally different than anything experienced before. I wish I’d thought at that time to ask about the tell-tale loss of smell and taste, but I think if a kid is sick and doesn’t feel like eating anyway, that may be something they don’t realize? If it was covid, it was a relatively short case compared to both the flu a and b also contracted winter of 2020 (despite having had a flu shot🙄).

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a relative who probably had it in February 2020.  She often travels internationally and she had some kind of viral pneumonia.  Her doctor told her to go home and stay there.  She lives alone and was able to get groceries delivered.

Recently, when she received her vaccine, she reacted strongly to the first dose, just as many people who have had Covid.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, I have a friend who visited her sister in Germany in November or December of 2019 and became horribly sick right when she got back.  Her husband caught it from her and was also horribly sick but did recover pretty well—I think he was hospitalized for about a week and then went home and got better.  She was hospitalized for over 3 weeks in January 2020 but they were not tuned into Covid then.  They tested her for flu and that was negative.  They said it was ‘just a virus’ but she almost died.  When she went home, she was on oxygen from then on, and did not set foot outside for over 6 months.  When she finally felt better enough to go for a walk, her husband drove her to the top of a block with a slight downward slope to make the exertion less, and followed her in the car with an oxygen tank spare just in case.  She is still not back to normal.

  • Sad 5
Link to post
Share on other sites

I know people who think/thought they had it.  But there was supposedly another bad virus going around at the same time ... even worse in many age groups.  So given that Covid is actually pretty mild for most people, and given how long it was before they found confirmed cases of it in most of the USA, I doubt people I know had Covid before it became a "thing."

Not that it really matters now, does it?

(One of the families that thought they all had Covid early on, recently caught Covid, confirmed by a positive test.  While I know it's unclear how long antibodies last, I still think it's unlikely they actually had Covid twice.)

Edited by SKL
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I kind of worry about taking this kind of testimony, because it equates "bad bug" with COVID, and then we get a unrepresentative sample of COVID... 

Also, I my ex-friend went around saying she probably had it already, and that's why she didn't need to socially distance or wear a mask 🙄

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
29 minutes ago, Not_a_Number said:

I kind of worry about taking this kind of testimony, because it equates "bad bug" with COVID, and then we get a unrepresentative sample of COVID... 

Also, I my ex-friend went around saying she probably had it already, and that's why she didn't need to socially distance or wear a mask 🙄

I hear what you are saying. Out of all the people I know who "think" they had it, or actually did have it, almost all have continued to exercise caution. They mask, distance, and take less risk etc. Partly because if/when we had it, it was so long ago that the antibodies are unlikely to show anymore anyway, so we cannot be certain. Plus second time around COVID is supposed to be worse. I think the people who are using it as an excuse to not socially distance or wear a mask would have used any excuse really. We all know of people who chose to not follow the recommendations for social distancing and masking. 

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, bluemongoose said:

I think the people who are using it as an excuse to not socially distance or wear a mask would have used any excuse really.

Oh, absolutely. She DID use other excuses, too 😛 . You're right about that. 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes. Someone I used to work with was deathly sick out of nowhere in Jan/Feb of last year. Lots of unusual blood clotting symptoms, some cognitive issues, but she hadn't had a stroke... she spent weeks in the hospital and took ages to fully recover. They now think it may have been Covid and it seems like a reasonable guess given what we all know now.

Link to post
Share on other sites

We were sick end of Feb 2020.  Friend and kids were also sick.  (Dont remember who gave it to who). She was convinced that it had been covid. I was skeptical.  However my parents were visiting and my dad went home sick and was very sick all spring. X-ray showed his lungs in very had shape but they live rural and I doubt their dr knew what covid lungs looked like in March/april 2020.  I didn't find out until the fall that my dad has not been able to taste or smell since then. He still can't so over a year. So then I thought maybe it was covid that we had but then myself and my daughter had a confirmed case in November 2020. So who knows.  

I know two teenage girls, unrelated to each other and they don't even know each other, who had pneumonia in January and February of 2020 which at the time even I thought was very strange.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
47 minutes ago, Not_a_Number said:

I kind of worry about taking this kind of testimony, because it equates "bad bug" with COVID, and then we get a unrepresentative sample of COVID... 

Also, I my ex-friend went around saying she probably had it already, and that's why she didn't need to socially distance or wear a mask 🙄

I get that. But also, the more we find out, the more we're realizing that it was likely circulating earlier than we knew. So when people had severe illness with Covid-related symptoms in December/January 2020 then I don't think it's crazy at all.

On the other hand, when my brother told me he was probably immune to Covid because he'd had the "wook flu" at a Widespread show a few years ago and everyone knew the government had engineered that and it was really similar to Covid... well, that's some grade A b********.

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, Farrar said:

I get that. But also, the more we find out, the more we're realizing that it was likely circulating earlier than we knew. So when people had severe illness with Covid-related symptoms in December/January 2020 then I don't think it's crazy at all.

But the problem is that we then select for people with severe illness and get an unrepresentative sample, you know? 

I think my ex-friend had something back in November or early December, so I doubt it 😛 . But I'm not surprised when people traveling internationally report having COVID symptoms early in 2020 at all. It's just that it's really hard to tell. 

Like, I had a relatively bad case of the flu in November. I coughed for something like a month after recovering -- I took to carrying around giant bags of Halls so I could talk. But it started in mid-November (on my birthday, lol!), so I'm pretty sure it wasn't COVID 😉 . 

 

Just now, Farrar said:

On the other hand, when my brother told me he was probably immune to Covid because he'd had the "wook flu" at a Widespread show a few years ago and everyone knew the government had engineered that and it was really similar to Covid... well, that's some grade A b********.

Ah yes. That sounds like pernicious nonsense right there. 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I initially thought the number of people claiming that was unrealistic but comparing the death and case curves from the first wave to those from November last year it’s clear it must have been far more widespread earlier than testing shows so there’s a decent chance they did.  I still don’t know how the heck we were lucky enough to escape that in Australia given how late it was when we shut borders.  There must be some level of summer/winter factor and we and NZ were lucky enough to see what it looked like in winter for other countries before our own winters hit.  
 
Having said that we just had a bug go through that I could have though was COVID if we didn’t have negative tests.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

I had the terrible thing that was going around January-February 2020. Fever, chills, full body ache, etc. I can't remember loss of taste or smell but I know I basically stopped eating. I got such bad ear infections I actually went to the doctor for it, which meant going from 5500' to 4600' and I felt every single foot of difference; I thought for sure I did permanent damage to my ears with that drive and did not handle it well (ugly cry the whole way). I was out for a total of a month just laying on the couch. 

However, I haven't heard a whisper about ear infections in relation to Covid and did not get a bad reaction to the first vaccine shot, so I've come down on the side of not-Covid for myself, despite the timing and other people attributing their bad early-2020 sickness on it. Perhaps Covid was going around at the time, but something else was as well. 

  • Sad 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

We had Covid before they knew it was in our area in January 2020.  We had a lot of atypical pneumonia in the area at the time. 

  A close friend’s dad passed a feed days before Christmas in December 2019 from what his doctors now think was Covid.  He went down very fast with it.  He was diagnosed with a very interesting pneumonia and went from sick to needing a vent in 48 hours.  He was gone within 96 hours from when he was admitted.  He was a very active older gentleman who enjoyed life.  

  • Sad 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

A good friend of mine is pretty sure her family had it in Dec 2019.  I suspect there are some others.  In the moon or so before it was a big thing, everyone was talking about the “really bad flu” that was going around.  In hindsight, their symptoms and experiences sound a lot like covid.  

Link to post
Share on other sites

We have wondered if Dd in Geneva did in January of 2020.  Her roommate (in their very small room) was in med school at U of Geneva, and in a lab with three docs who had just returned from a lab in a hospital in Wuhan. All of the lab later quarantined. It was right after they returned after Christmas, and I had not yet begun to read the big covid thread.  Her roommate had something first that was like a pretty bad respiratory flu, then dd caught it.  They each had it about 5 days but without loss of taste or smell.  We only thought about it much later, mostly due to roommate's proximity to lab docs and the timing.  They're both early 20s.

Edited by Harpymom
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Seasider too said:

I wish I’d thought at that time to ask about the tell-tale loss of smell and taste, but I think if a kid is sick and doesn’t feel like eating anyway, that may be something they don’t realize?

 

1 hour ago, busymama7 said:

I didn't find out until the fall that my dad has not been able to taste or smell since then. He still can't so over a year.

 

1 hour ago, Moonhawk said:

I can't remember loss of taste or smell

 

19 minutes ago, Harpymom said:

They each had it about 5 days but without loss of taste or smell. 

I think given these and other posts across this board it's important to note...

loss of taste or smell is not some bizarre symptom unique to covid, nor do all (or even most) people who have covid develop this symptom.  Loss of taste and smell can and does happen with moderate to severe cases of "just a virus" situations.  In addition, a large percentage of people who get covid have little to no symptoms and in my own very anecdotal situation....DH never lost either sense.  Nor did the kids or I.  Such a symptom is not "tell tale" or unique and is not a reason to think a person did or did not have covid.  It might be possible that such a symptom is more prevalent in covid vs other respiratory viruses, but I am not sure the data actually points to such a thing one way or another....I am not even sure it's been studied much. 

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

 

 

 

I think given these and other posts across this board it's important to note...

loss of taste or smell is not some bizarre symptom unique to covid, nor do all (or even most) people who have covid develop this symptom.  Loss of taste and smell can and does happen with moderate to severe cases of "just a virus" situations.  In addition, a large percentage of people who get covid have little to no symptoms and in my own very anecdotal situation....DH never lost either sense.  Nor did the kids or I.  Such a symptom is not "tell tale" or unique and is not a reason to think a person did or did not have covid.  It might be possible that such a symptom is more prevalent in covid vs other respiratory viruses, but I am not sure the data actually points to such a thing one way or another....I am not even sure it's been studied much. 

Yes, this is a very good point.

I regularly lose sense of taste/smell with viruses - it was familiar enough that I did not find it remarkable when we were ill last Dec, when DH came home from Germany.  And my mother permanently lost her sense of smell when I was a teen - after some sort of respiratory illness.  So that symptom doesn’t usually strike me as odd.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I think my son may have had it in February 2020.  He is actually participating in a clinical study to determine the immune response to the covid vaccines in people receiving checkpoint inhibitors for cancer.  He tells me that the first blood test will tell them if he as had covid.  So, we'll see.

Link to post
Share on other sites
26 minutes ago, EKS said:

I think my son may have had it in February 2020.  He is actually participating in a clinical study to determine the immune response to the covid vaccines in people receiving checkpoint inhibitors for cancer.  He tells me that the first blood test will tell them if he as had covid.  So, we'll see.

Will they be able to tell, a year+ later?

Link to post
Share on other sites

We had more than usual amount of people in our area hospitalized for pneumonia December 2019. It was noticeable.  Then many in our church with severe, lingering virus, testing negative for the flu. It was weird. Long term chest congestion and fatigue. 

4 of my children came down with an intense virus starting in Nov. 2019. It lasted for weeks between them.  Severe sore throat, headaches, back aches, high fevers, night sweats,  mild hallucination in one, developing coughs later. I figured it was the flu at first but didn't get them tested. But it ended up being different than anything we've had before. 

Edited by KeriJ
Link to post
Share on other sites
19 minutes ago, Seasider too said:

Will they be able to tell, a year+ later?

We'll see.  He said they said it was a "special" test.  But I have no idea.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Not_a_Number said:

But the problem is that we then select for people with severe illness and get an unrepresentative sample, you know? 

 

I mean, it's not like we're doing a study. I don't think anyone thinks this is great data. It's a casual discussion.

At least in my friend's case, a year on, her doctors apparently suspect it was Covid. 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I got really, really sick with a virus in March 2020. Breathing issues etc. My son got sick too, but for 2 weeks - it was like 2 months for me. 

At the time, I was worried it was Covid, because it was just around the time everything was shutting down. The Dr was like 'well, could be Covid, who knows, you can't get tested' (at that time only if you'd been overseas).

Now, I don't think it was Covid, I think it was another virus. Very few people had Covid at that time and literally  no one in our region. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, EKS said:

We'll see.  He said they said it was a "special" test.  But I have no idea.

I just read something yesterday that said people who have had Covid have such a strong immune response to the vaccine that they may not need a second dose.  That was certainly true for our pharmacist In the family. 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Spryte said:

Yes, this is a very good point.

I regularly lose sense of taste/smell with viruses - it was familiar enough that I did not find it remarkable when we were ill last Dec, when DH came home from Germany.  And my mother permanently lost her sense of smell when I was a teen - after some sort of respiratory illness.  So that symptom doesn’t usually strike me as odd.

I’ve heard descriptions of it that sounded very different from what I personally experience with viruses. Usually, I just get stuffed up and it’s hard to taste. But it’s not like everything is identical, which is how people describe it for COVID. It sounds different to me, and people describe it as not being like other things in their subjective experience.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
51 minutes ago, Farrar said:

I mean, it's not like we're doing a study. I don't think anyone thinks this is great data. It's a casual discussion.

At least in my friend's case, a year on, her doctors apparently suspect it was Covid. 

I think we all hold data in our heads, and it adds up to an impression 🙂 

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Not_a_Number said:

I’ve heard descriptions of it that sounded very different from what I personally experience with viruses. Usually, I just get stuffed up and it’s hard to taste. But it’s not like everything is identical, which is how people describe it for COVID. It sounds different to me, and people describe it as not being like other things in their subjective experience.

That does sound different, I’m not sure I’d say that everything tastes identical - more like very, very muted. And extremely strong smells usually come through.  But I don’t particularly want to catch Covid to compare.  😊

My mom who lost her sense of smell years and years ago - she literally smells nothing.  Which has its good points.  

  • Haha 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Spryte said:

That does sound different, I’m not sure I’d say that everything tastes identical - more like very, very muted. And extremely strong smells usually come through.  But I don’t particularly want to catch Covid to compare.  😊

My mom who lost her sense of smell years and years ago - she literally smells nothing.  Which has its good points.  

People have described it as complete loss of taste/smell without congestion, which sounds like something I’ve never experienced. Any idea how your mom lost hers? Was it a respiratory bug?

Link to post
Share on other sites
21 minutes ago, Not_a_Number said:

People have described it as complete loss of taste/smell without congestion, which sounds like something I’ve never experienced. Any idea how your mom lost hers? Was it a respiratory bug?

Yes, respiratory illness of some kind, we always called it a virus.  This was when I was a teen, so it’s ancient history.  I recall she was pretty upset about it a few months later (? I think it was months?) and kept going to docs who kept checking for sinus infections and giving her nose sprays.  They finally said it might come back eventually.  But it never really did.  She’s 80 now, and doesn’t miss it.

Oddly, I have a close IRL friend who lost her sense of smell as well, but I can’t recall how or why.  Now I must ask her tomorrow! 

Edited by Spryte
Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...