Coronavirus: Student mistook symptoms for tiredness after Joe Wicks workout

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image copyrightLucy Patterson
image captionLucy Patterson, 21, thought she just felt "really tired" after doing a Joe Wicks workout

A university student who thought she was just "tired from doing a Joe Wicks workout" collapsed with coronavirus.

Lucy Patterson, 21, thought she just felt ill from "doing too many squats", but had to spend eight days in hospital after struggling to breathe.

The University of Liverpool student had been self-isolating for two weeks after a housemate had been ill with symptoms, before she felt "tired and nauseous".

It was only after she blacked out that she called her GP.

"The GP told me to go to A&E but when I called the ambulance service they said it would be hours and said I should take a make my own way if I could", Lucy, who lives in Wavertree, said.

"I was so scared. I had to take a taxi because I had no other way of getting there."

image copyrightLucy Patterson
image captionLucy thanked the NHS who she said were "so lovely" and "really looked after me"

When she arrived at The Liverpool Royal University Hospital, Lucy, who is originally from Ballymoney in Northern Ireland, said tests revealed her blood oxygen level was low, and she was "rushed" into a separate coronavirus ward.

She was put on a CPAP (Continuous positive airway pressure) machine and told she needed to stay in hospital.

"I was shocked because I thought I would be going home the same day", she said.

Lucy thought she was at "low risk" of becoming seriously ill as she was young and healthy and with no underlying conditions.

But she said she became "terrified" when doctors told her she had pneumonia in 50% of her lungs.

image copyrightLucy Patterson
image captionLucy says she now feels "100% back to normal" and is slowly starting to exercise again

"When they started talking about putting me on a ventilator I was really scared," she said.

"It was really hard not having my mum and dad with me and having to explain to them on a video call how ill I was. I was on my own, but the staff were just so lovely."

She singled out one nurses especially, Emily, who she said "became like my surrogate mum" and she "really looked after me".

The nurses even clubbed in together to buy Lucy essentials including pyjamas and toiletries because she had not brought anything with her to hospital.

Lucy's blood oxygen levels eventually increased, and she was discharged on 21 April.

Although she will have to go back to hospital for a chest x-ray in four months, Lucy says she now feels "100% back to normal" .

'Taking it easy'

The final year zoology student plans to take her final year exams next week and has even started exercising again.

"I've been walking outside and even managed a short a run," she said.

"But I am taking it easy - and I am slowly working my way back to doing Joe Wicks."

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