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What one Houston area COVID-19 patient wants you to know

HOUSTON – As we keep hearing about more cases of coronavirus in our area, we are also keeping track of those who are recovering from the virus.

We talked with a Liberty County woman who is recovering at home and feeling much better. She still faces many more days in quarantine.

On March 17, LaNora Purvis starting having what she thought was allergy symptoms. But her cough and itchy throat quickly turned into a high fever and body aches.

“When I got up I had 103 fever. I called the hospital and they told me to come on in," Purvis said. "I had 103 fever, had aches and pains, I was not feeling very well at all. They tested me for everything, the flu, pneumonia, strep -- everything came back negative so they said we are going to have to test you for COVID-19. They told me to stay home and quarantine in a room to myself until I get the results back. I got my results back on that Saturday.”

When she got the results on March 21, she soon realized how dangerous this virus could be.

“People were sending me messages saying are you afraid you are dying? I’m like, do people thinking I’m going to die? I didn’t know what was happening, so ... yeah, that was kinda scary,” she said.

What does COVID-19 feel like?

While many health officials are telling people coronavirus symptoms could appear flu-like. But, global COVID-19 data indicates most patients will only experience a small number of these symptoms. For LaNora, her symptoms varied.

“I had 103 fever, aches and pains, I was not feeling very well at all,” Purvis said. “I was aches and pain all those days, no appetite, just not feeling well at all. Still coughing. I was still battling with my cough and my fever comes back off and on. I’m up and around so I’m doing good. I would not want it for anyone. It was pretty painful. My body aches were severe. The coughing, it was just kinda not knowing what’s going on. I’m a very healthy person, I haven’t been to a doctor in many years. Not understanding what it was all about so it was pretty scary in that sense of it.”

For now, LaNora is taking Vitamin-C, cough medicine and Tylenol for the fever. She also had to document every single place she visited for the 14 days before she started showing symptoms.

“Letting people know where I’ve been, you know help somebody else in the community," LaNora said. "I mean, one of those places is where I picked it up. It’s one of those places where I got sick. I wasn’t sure where I got it from. I wasn’t sure what it was. We don’t have a TV here, so we don’t watch a lot of news and things like that. I wasn’t sure what all was going on.”

Additional quarantine after showing no symptoms

After already being in self-quarantine, LaNora still has a long way to go.

"I still have a fever off and on and I still have a cough," she explains. "Until my fever and cough have gone 72 hours with no symptoms that's when my 14 days will start - another 14 days."

We have heard that people with coronavirus have symptoms that come and go. Like LaNora mentioned, you have to wait until all symptoms disappear, then start your 14-day quarantine before she can leave home. Each case appears to be slightly different. Keisha Lyles shared her story with us last week. She is among Houston-area’s more than 500 coronavirus patients.