Local Lehigh Valley resident shares her COVID-19 symptoms as a ‘long hauler’

Written by on January 5, 2021

Local Lehigh Valley resident shares her COVID-19 symptoms as a ‘long hauler’

By Ben Stemrich

January 5, 2021

Colette Boudreaux and her husband, John Andreadis shared their COVID-19 story on Lehigh Valley Public Media’s show ‘Community Update on Coronavirus.’
Listen to the story.

For most people infected with the Coronavirus, symptoms are mild and recovery is complete, or nearly so.

But hundreds of thousands of Americans  of all ages have died from COVID-19. And then there are the so-called, ‘long haulers,’ who may struggle with persistent symptoms for months.

Lehigh Valley residents Colette Boudreaux and her husband, John Andreadis, have become very familiar with the term.

Boudreaux, a singer, dancer and theater director, contracted COVID-19 early on. Since she had been in good physical condition, she expected to be back to her normal self in the usual two weeks.

“That was not the case. I was hospitalized at the end of March, stayed there for nine days, was discharged and was back in at the end of April and then was discharged again. I was on oxygen for months and was hospitalized two more times because in August I started having more severe neurological issues,” she says. 

She thought she was having a series of strokes which were later ruled out. But doctors have not yet determined the actual cause. The most recent theory is that the incidents is her body’s reaction to prolonged lack of oxygen.

“My oxygen levels are still dropping at this point,” she says.

Her husband says he feels helpless.

“During her first hospitalization, there was a complication. The truth of the matter is that she almost died,” Andreadis says.

Struggling day-to-day, Boudreux says people who don’t take COVID-19 seriously “infuriate” her.

“But it’s also heartbreaking…and you could be responsible for doing this to somebody else. I would never forgive myself if I did that,” she says, “it’s just it’s not about you, it’s about other people.”

That interview by WLVR’s Ben Stemrich was for Community Update on Coronavirus, which airs each Monday, Wednesday and Friday – at 4 p.m. on PBS39 and 91.3 FM WLVR at 9:30 p.m. those evenings. 

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