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Q. My father is recovering from severe COVID-19 pneumonia with fluctuations in oxygen levels. Please help.

Answered by
Dr. Pawar Satyajit Jalinder
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Jun 22, 2021

Hi doctor,

My father is recovering from severe COVID-19 pneumonia (CT score 17). It is his 22nd day today. Oxygen levels are fine when he sits or lies on the bed. But walking for a short duration drops the oxygen to 84% to 85% range. It comes back to 95% very quickly once he gets back to bed. He has some problem in breathing (very mild) and is getting better but very slowly. He also has a cough, not very severe but mostly unproductive, and if sputum comes out, it is very little and dark brown and thick in texture. Currently, he is taking Deriphyllin Retard 300, Allegra M, Esiflo inhaler, and Ascoril D Plus cough syrup. How long can it take for him to recover?

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Hi,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have gone through your query, and I can understand your concern. Based on the history provided, your father has a moderately severe disease (computed tomography or CT score 17) and has now recovered. Though he does not require oxygen, there is a fall in saturation after exertion, which signifies that lung damage due to COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) has not yet completely healed. As I have seen in many of my patients, in those who have severe disease and required a high amount of oxygen during their illness, their lungs take almost two months to get back to completely normal. There are some blood tests like CRP (c-reactive protein) and D-dimer, which can give an idea of the severity of the disease currently and based on which some blood thinner tablets and steroids are given for one month at low dosages to help this recovery. These tablets also reduce the worsening of lung condition, which can occur in these patients even after recovery from COVID-19.

I would guide you better if you can provide his blood investigations at discharge from the hospital. Also, does he have any other illness so that steroids may not be given? Meanwhile, avoid doing moderate to severe exertion. Instead, keep doing spirometry-based breathing exercises for lung recovery. I would be happy to help you further if you have any other questions.

Thank you.


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