"What's cowboy nose-blowing?" I asked Karen. Yesterday while hiking, Karen laid out her case. She thinks she gave me COVID-19 in February.
"Cowboy nose-blowing is when you press closed one nostril and blow forcefully from the other nostril," she replied. "I did it when I was outside. A four-inch plug of snot came out. It looked like a worm. The next day, I blew a snot worm out of my other nostril. I felt much better after that."
Disgusting. I stand enlightened. Here's the story.
On Feb. 15, Karen and her husband returned from a 10-day trip in Japan. In Japan, they rode packed trains and buses. They arrived in Seattle. The next day, news broke of a COVID-19 outbreak in a nursing home in a Seattle suburb.
On Feb. 17, Karen and I hiked together. She had a backache, often the first symptom of COVID-19. While eating lunch, Karen handed me a fig with her bare hands. Three days later, I had a backache, too.
We had a 102-degree fever for five days. Headache, upper respiratory congestion, runny nose, coughing, shortness of breath, body aches, extreme fatigue and weakness. Fever flared up again when we tried going for a walk. At 71, Karen could not walk her dog for a week. Karen was tired for four weeks afterward. I recovered quicker.
Without a test for antibodies, we won't know if we had COVID-19.
We feel fine now. Antibody tests are not available. The priority is COVID-19 testing.
This is strictly my personal opinion and it's going to sound a little preachy -- sorry.
I'm afraid we're all going to get exposed to COVID-19 at some point before this fades.
For now the best we may be able to do is to put off that exposure until we better understand the disease and (hopefully) have some somewhat reliable treatment(s).
It's unfortunate that you have reason to believe that your friend could have brought the pathogen to you. Pay attention to yourself and make sure the illness doesn't slip into something more threatening like pneumonia -- make sure it doesn't get a chance to sneak up on you.
Also, don't forget that as bad as it seems (and of course there is some risk), most people do recover -- plan on getting through it either by avoiding it or recovering.
At this point we know so little that there is by nature a lot of uncertainty and therefore fear in everyone's situations.
Get tested as soon as you can and (no matter how unpleasant) follow social distancing procedures -- not only for your sake but for the sakes of those near you.
As far as I know that is the only demonstrably beneficial action we have.
We all have to make our ways as best we can.
I wish I could help and I'm thinking of you.❤ BTW... With that in mind, if a stint in AZ would be useful, contact us.
Well since you asked, I am not a doctor, but I did stay at a Holliday Inn. I don't know and I am glad that you are both doing well. If the antibody test becomes available to you, then you may be able to find out. I hope you both continue to stay healthy and well.
It will sure be interesting to find out how many of us actually had covid-19 once the anti-body tests come out. That will be the only way to tell if that's what it was. Your symptoms are similar to what I experienced in January/February after international travel.
For me, the upper respiratory dry cough changed gradually to lower respiratory infection and I wondered if I was experiencing pneumonia before I finally started getting better.
I wish everyone that had symptoms half as suspicious as yours could get tested. Then we would have some idea what we are actually facing. Right now, we just know that about 20% of people who are deemed sick enough to get a test have covid 19. That's the national average, and it hasn't budged since we had just a few cases. If we tested ten times more people and the percentage of positives dropped to about 2% we would have much higher confidence we were finding all the cases. Three months in, we are still walking around blind without a cane.
That hits the whole testing problem on the head. Lots of people could easily have a bad cold or flu, think they have had the virus and then stop taking precautions. Then they could far more easily catch and spread the virus, especially if they are among the lucky ones who only have mild symptoms.
I'm not sure what to say and I cannot claim either of you had COVID-19. Obviously you both had something. A man at my workplace came down with flu, recovered, then took off until this pandemic comes into better control because he does not want to give it to his invalid mother. A girl at my workplace thought she had the virus and her doctor sent her for testing. They would not even test her and sent her back. She does seem very fearful to an extreme.
Many of us have our own "remedies" for lots of things. I do my own version of cowboy nose blowing and I also us hydrogen peroxide in my ears. I also drink 6 oz. of aloe vera juice a day mixed with other ingredients. A friend of mine says "this will not help you with COVID-19" I never told him that any of it had anything to do with COVID-19. He only assumed so out of his own fear.
@seagreeneyez I'm perplexed by the reactions of disgust. The buildup of phlegm is a natural body process. It's better eliminated than not. A Kleenex isn't always available, especially out in nature. What's the alternative? It's an earthily elegant solution to a problem, and keeps your hands cleaner than when you use a Kneelex. Please tell me you didn't think she blocked the one nostril by sticking a finger inside of her nose lol!