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Algerian Journalist Recounts to Asharq Al-Awsat his Experience with COVID-19

Algerian Journalist Recounts to Asharq Al-Awsat his Experience with COVID-19

Wednesday, 20 May, 2020 - 09:15
Algerian journalist Akram Khareef. (Asharq Al-Awsat)
Algiers - Boualem Goumrassa

“My encounter with the coronavirus cannot be considered a prescription or a treatment protocol, but it is a story of how I lived with the virus for 14 days,” Algerian journalist Akram Khareef told Asharq Al-Awsat.


He also noted that it is hard to compare the coronavirus to the flu even though they share common symptoms.


“The first three days were confusing because of the severe headache I had; it drove me to overuse over-the-counter painkillers. The headache stopped on the fourth day,” Khareef said, adding that he began to hallucinate during the high fever phase.


“I began to imagine that the virus was armed with a knife and that I could crush it if I could find it. On the fourth day, I felt as though I had bronchitis and that my lungs were suspended in vacuum. I didn’t have difficulty breathing, but I was coughing a little,” he added.


Khareef’s cough quickly developed into a nonstop nuisance that forced him to take anti-cough syrup. On the fifth day, he quit the medicine but kept on taking painkillers and vitamin C.


“The fever did not stop, but was accompanied by pain, hallucinations and severe fatigue.”


For the duration of his illness, Khareef remained in contact with doctors, who are his friends, over the phone.


He had thought about heading to the hospital but did not feel as though his life was in danger.


“Despite some shortness in breath, I was breathing fine,” he said.


On the sixth day, he began to feel better, but was still unable to taste or smell anything.


“The virus then began to scout my body for new targets. I was feeling severe joint pain, had diarrhea and was too nauseous to eat,” Khareef noted.


On the ninth day, he discovered vitamin C in the form of a powder, saying that its consumption helped him a lot in resisting the virus.


It wasn’t until the 13th day that Khareef’s fever subsided and he was out of the woods.


“All my symptoms went away on the 14th day,” Khareef said, asserting that a regiment of vitamin C and painkillers was his best friend during his 14-day ordeal with the virus.


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