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Some long-haulers say lasting symptoms improve after vaccination

Published: Apr. 21, 2021 at 6:03 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Some people who have battled COVID have found themselves dealing with lasting symptoms long after testing negative. Some COVID long-haulers report their symptoms are going away after getting vaccinated.

“I kind of felt like that was going to be my permanent new normal,” said Rose Cheney, a COVID long hauler. “That I was going to be chronically disabled.”

A mild case of COVID left Rose Cheney with serious health impacts.

“I had permanent lung and heart damage even though I never had symptoms respiratory wise,” she said. “It just was unbelievable.”

The long-haul symptoms affected her daily life for 10 months.

“I’m a graduate school student and I have a 4.0. I couldn’t remember my address. I couldn’t remember what a panda bear was. Really easy stuff that I should know,” she said.

One month ago, the vaccine turned everything around.

“About four days after the first shot all the symptoms were completely gone,” she said.

She isn’t the only one who has seen her symptoms disappear after being vaccinated.

“I was skeptical because I know our mind plays tricks on us. When I could eat chicken again, I was like it really is coming back and just day by day,” said Donna Robinson.

Health experts are looking into why the symptoms are improving for some long-haulers. One theory is that the virus hides in some people’s bodies.

“The vaccine induces robust antibody and T-cell responses that can clear the viral reservoir or remnants that’s causing the inflammation and that would be a permanent solution to long COVID,” said Akiko Iwasaki, an immunobiologist at Yale School of Medicine.

About 40 percent of more than 900 long-haulers in a Facebook group called “Survivor Corps” said their lingering symptoms improved after getting the vaccine.

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