Woman, 27, called COVID “long-hauler” by Mayo doctors


MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — In February, Emily Esposito, 27, ran the Disney 10K. A strong start to what was supposed to be a banner year. She and her fiancé Kyle Moore were supposed to get married on Oct. 10.

In March, COVID-19 had her bed-ridden.

“Running every day and working all the time and enjoying everything,” she told us from her couch, while beginning to lose her breath. “And that all came to a huge halt.”

Doctors gave her a “presumptive positive” diagnosis in March. Since it was so early on, and there wasn’t much known yet about the novel coronavirus, that’s all she could get.

“Met with doctor, he said we only have 6 tests, we’re saving those for people who are autoimmune-deficient or older,” she said.

On paper, she didn’t meet the high-risk criteria. Her symptoms, however, said otherwise. Some days she could barely move. Her short-term memory began to fade.

She got her first positive test result in April. She had some short stints in the hospital – but no real relief from her symptoms. So Moore drove her up to UAB, where she was admitted on the spot.

Then came a moment the couple thought might be Esposito’s last.

“All of a sudden my body completely froze, I couldn’t move any part of my body,” she said. “I remember the doctors rushing in. I couldn’t move my arms and legs, my heart rate was out of control.”

The bottom of her lung collapsed.

From there, her case required research doctors, so she spent a month at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville. She still has monthly visits.

She has more of a routine now, some more normalcy. It’s just interrupted by her losing her breath in the middle of a sentence, or a lapse in memory.

“I don’t think this is something we’ll ever put behind me,” she said. “I think this is just a part of life.”

But the couple is adjusting. And now looking ahead to their new wedding date, Oct. 9, 2021.


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