After fighting COVID-19 in Arizona Hospital for almost 7 Months, a woman returns home

Claudia Patterson was diagnosed with COVID-19 in July. She slipped into a two-month-long coma.

Raymond, her husband, was there to support her when doctors determined that the resident of Arizona needed extracorporeal membrane oxygenation.

“When someone is really sick with a COVID case, and COVID goes in and attacks the lung, it gets so bad that your body isn’t able to deliver oxygen right through your lungs to your blood,”Dr. Shad marvasti, University of Arizona, said. “And that’s where ECMO comes in.”

Claudia’s lungs functioned at only 15%, so some doctors thought she would need a transplant to live. However, she remained on the ECMO machine 135 days.

“Not only are you on a machine and a ventilator and all of that, but you had to stay kind of still because any false move could have exploded the blood,”Claudia Patterson stated.

Claudia began to feel better and doctors suggested that she receive plenty of occupational therapy and physical therapy.

She did.

Claudia re-learned how to walk and talk, and was finally ready to leave Dignity Health St Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix and head home for the first time in almost seven months.

“I was able to take a sigh of relief,”Raymond said. “You know it’s like okay. We kind of made it through the hard part.”

Claudia closes the chapter and now her main goal is to heal.

“I feel okay,”She agreed. My breathing is still a challenge. If that’s all that’s wrong, I’m thankful. That’s what I’m grateful to you for.”

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